Basketball Player Saves Referee's Life by Performing CPR During Game

A minor league basketball player rushed to perform CPR after a referee collapsed during an Upper Midwest Division playoff game of The Basketball League in Jamestown, New York, on June 11, ultimately saving his life.

Video taken by Kayla Crosby at Jamestown Community College shows the moment referee John Sculli collapsed on the sideline and Toledo Glass City player Myles Copeland immediately rushed over to administer CPR. Sculli was suffering a heart attack, local media reported.

In the video, basketball officials and courtside observers gather around Sculli to block the crowd from witnessing the frightening situation.

Speaking to local media, Copeland said that he is a career firefighter, playing basketball for his community team in his time off, and often has to perform CPR when on duty.

“Instantly, my instincts kicked in and I’m there before I get time to think. I felt for a pulse, making sure he’s breathing. I didn’t feel a pulse, so I just started doing CPR like I’m trained to do," he told the Post-Journal.

After 30 minutes of Copeland administering CPR, Sculli was taken to the hospital awake and alert.

Shortly after, the Jamestown Jackals and Toledo Glass City teams continued the game, with Toledo finishing with a 96-93 win that forced a Game 3 the following day.

“I’ve been in contact with [Sculli’s] family,” Copeland said. “His family thanks me for what I did and they say he’s getting back to being stable. I’m just hoping for the best recovery for him.” Credit: Kayla Crosby via Storyful

Video transcript

[CROWD NOISE]

[PA ANNOUNCER CALLING COURT ACTION]

[WHISTLE BLOWING]

[CROWD MURMURING]

- We need to call 911. Call 911. We got it right here. We got it right here.

[CROWD MURMURING]

- Where is it?

[CROWD MURMURING]

- The defibrillator. The defibrillator.

[CROWD MURMURING]

- What's happening?

[CROWD MURMURING]

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