Bradley Beal and John Wall, right, have led fundraising efforts within the team for Hurricane Harvey relief. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports)

As Hurricane Harvey devastated Houston over the weekend, Washington Wizards players John Wall and Bradley Beal decided to help. The pair reached out to teammates through a group text message, leading the effort to raise money for people affected by the hurricane and historical flooding in Southeast Texas.

By Monday, the players’ donations had reached $250,000 with more dollars expected. According to a team source, Markieff Morris and Otto Porter Jr. were two of the first players to respond to the group message and give money, and the players’ impromptu fundraising has spread throughout the Wizards organization. Majority team owner Ted Leonsis, President Ernie Grunfeld and Coach Scott Brooks also have personally donated money to the American Red Cross, and the organization over the Wizards, Capitals and Mystics’ charities — MSE Foundation — has contributed to the players’ amount.

“John and Brad put together a group text and wanted to help out the people in Houston, and I think everybody is jumping on board,” Brooks said Monday morning, hours after learning of his players’ efforts. “It’s exciting. I’m pretty proud of them to spearhead the group and help out the people in Texas.”

The Wizards have several ties to the Houston area. Besides Brooks — who played for the Houston Rockets for three seasons and won the 1994 NBA championship with them — point guard Tim Frazier and wing Sheldon Mac are from Houston and both players are currently in the city. On Monday evening, Mac tweeted that he was “stuck” in his house because of the rising floodwaters.

Wizards forward Kelly Oubre Jr. also has called Houston his home. In 2005, Oubre was 9 years old when he and his father evacuated their home town of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. The Oubres settled in Houston for years before moving to Las Vegas for his senior year of high school.

Brooks still has friends within the city, many of whom have abandoned their homes. According to Texas officials, nine people have died as a result of the storm and 20 feet of additional rainfall is expected by Thursday.

“Nothing like this,” Brooks said when comparing past Houston flooding with the heavy amount of rain after Hurricane Harvey. “We had our share of major storms, but nothing like this. I mean, I’m just watching on TV and through the Internet. It’s devastating some of the areas that you can see. And then talking to some of my friends, it is pretty tough. They’ll have to move out and go to safety. It’s sad.”

Across professional sports, athletes have offered prayers and encouragement on social media, while others have gone the extra mile and offered financial support. Houston Texans linebacker J.J. Watt launched a fundraising campaign that had reached nearly $750,000 by Monday evening. Rockets owner Leslie Alexander announced a $4 million donation to the city.

While the Wizards anticipate their final donation to grow, players are encouraging others to donate to the American Red Cross, a team source said.

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