Magic Johnson
(J Alexander Diaz/Los Angeles Lakers)

Magic Johnson, Larry Bird Honored with 2019 Lifetime Achievement Award

by Joey Ramirez
Digital Reporter

The rivalry that defined a generation of basketball was honored at the NBA Awards on Monday.

Magic Johnson and Larry Bird both received the 2019 Lifetime Achievement Award — a fitting honor for a duo whose three NBA Finals matchups cemented the Lakers-Celtics rivalry as the greatest in basketball.

Upon receiving his award, Johnson thanked late owner Dr. Jerry Buss, current owner Jeanie Buss, former coach Pat Riley and his teammates, including Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jamaal Wilkes and Vlade Divac.

But Johnson’s final acknowledgment was saved for the man who shared the stage with him.

“I think we pushed each other to greatness,” Johnson said to Bird. “Every day I watched your box score … I always wanted to be just where you were. So thank you for pushing me and I hope I did the same for you.”

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