Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett is unhappy with his current contract (for good reason, probably) but that doesn't mean he's going to supplement his income by charging kids to come to his football camp in Hawaii this weekend. However, on Thursday he told local news channel KHON2 that he was "mad" about certain other rich athletes coming to Hawaii and charging exorbitant fees to families for the right for their kids to be a part of their events.
"I see a lot of different athletes come through Hawaii whether it's Steph Curry or whoever it is," Bennett quipped. "They all come here and it makes me mad, because I live in this community and I understand this community — that there's so many kids who can't afford to pay such a high amount of money. In my mind it's like, how much money do you need before you start giving back for free? And I think a lot of athletes should start focusing on that."
Bennett, who lives in Hawaii with his wife Pele, has spent much of the last four years donating time and money to the local community and is upset that Curry -- the two-time NBA MVP who is currently on a $44 million, four-year contract, but could likely be making $30 million or more per year soon -- recently hosted a four-day camp at the BYU-Hawaii campus and charged $2,250 to overnighters.
"If you do have a camp and you charge money for it, you need to make sure that money that you take from this community, you give back to the kids that are paying for the camp. These are the kids that live here. When you leave Hawaii and you go back to wherever you're at, or you come here and you go back from this vacation you leave with a piece of paradise, but these people still live here every day."
Bennett is set to make a $4 million base salary this season with a $1 million roster bonus and turns 31 later this year.
Of course, there is room for both free camps and camps that charge high fees to families willing to pay it. Also, Curry isn't the only one charging high fees for all types of things ranging from camps to autographs to pictures. Bennett likely took special exception because it's in the vicinity of his neighborhood and he knows the community well.
Steph Curry supports the Nothing But Nets campaign (United Nations, protecting families against malaria), NBA Cares, and the Animal Rescue Foundation.