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Mavs' J.J. Barea gets team plane for Puerto Rico hurricane relief

DALLAS -- Mavericks owner Mark Cuban loaned the team plane to point guard J.J. Barea to transport food, water and supplies to Barea's native Puerto Rico to aid in the recovery from Hurricane Maria.

Barea left Monday afternoon and plans to return Tuesday night, missing the first day of Mavs training camp.

Mark Cuban and JJ Barea.
"I was really proud of J.J. and how quickly he got involved and how hard he worked to make all of this happen," Cuban told ESPN in a text message.

"That's a situation that he's got to take care of," coach Rick Carlisle said. "Mark gave him our team plane. They loaded up a bunch of stuff, supplies, etc., to take over to Puerto Rico, and they're going to turn around and come back. He's going to take his mom and grandmother back with him, and my understanding is his dad is going to stay over there and slug it out with all of the recovery efforts."

Barea, the NBA's only active player who is a native Puerto Rican, did not have any communication with his parents until Sunday. He quickly made plans for his trip home after communicating with family and figuring out where help was needed most.

Barea and his wife, Viviana Ortiz, a Puerto Rican actress and model, organized an online fundraiser after Hurricane Maria devastated their homeland last Wednesday, when it hit Puerto Rico as a Category 4 storm with 155 mph winds. The storm caused major flooding and knocked out electricity and phone service throughout the island, much of which is expected to be without power for months.

Barea's fundraiser has generated more than $140,000.

Author: Tim McMahon, ESPN
Source: http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/20826278/mark-cuban-lends-dallas-mavericks-guard-jj-barea-team-plane-puerto-rico-hurricane-relief

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