Jazz and RSL players' families affected by storm

Jazz and RSL players' families affected by storm

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Sports) - The families of Randy Foye, Jamaal Tinsley and Chris Wingert all felt the affects of Hurricane Sandy.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Sports) - Millions of families on the east coast have been affected by Hurricane Sandy, and Utah Jazz and Real Salt Lake players are not immune.

Jazz guard Randy Foye was born and raised in Newark, New Jersey, a town hit hard by the storm.

"It's just terrible," said Foye. "I couldn't get in touch with anyone [last night], even on their home lines. Even into this morning I haven't spoken with my grandmother or with the people who were taking care of my house. We tried last night and the phones were busy, and I tried this morning and everybody's cell phones were dead."

Jamaal Tinsley is a Brooklyn native and he had better luck reaching his family in New York.

"Everybody is safe," Tinsley said. "I spoke to my son's mom who lives in Jersey, and my son is doing good. All my family is there, but it's just something that we can't control. The good news is everybody is safe. I spoke with everybody and it was good hearing their voices. They've all got a good spirit."

Real Salt Lake defender Chris Wingert's family lives on Long Island, and while most of the area was devastated by the storm, Wingert's family made out alright.

"My parents are about a half a mile from the water," Wingert said. "So, that was enough to keep them from most of the damage, which is great. They feel very fortunate because 80 percent of Long Island is without power and somehow they still have it. But down by the water, homes and cars are just getting destroyed."

Glued to his television set, Foye couldn't believe the devastation and damage he witnessed in the town that he loves so much.

"There's a bridge that is close to our house," he said. "They were saying the waves were so high, they were jumping over it. That's like a 25-foot jump. I hope that everything is OK back there, but we'll see."

"It really surprised me," said Tinsley. "To see all the building like that and the wind just taking over like that. You had things flying around in the city, it's tough to see."

All three players are heavily involved in their hometown communities, and they are not going to wait until the off-season to lend their support.

"We're going to try to do something right away," said Foye, who has a foundation based in Newark. "We're always doing food drives, coat drives and things of that nature. So, we're going to help out soon."

The Jazz open the NBA season tomorrow night, while Real Salt Lake kicks off the MLS playoffs Friday. But while the hearts of these three players are all with their families back east, they know they have jobs to do here in Utah.

"It's not going to be a distraction," said Tinsley. "I spoke to my people and everybody is safe. School is closed down so everybody is indoors, so knowing that everybody is good helps my peace of mind out here."
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