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Celtics legend Bob Cousy receives Presidential Medal of Freedom

by Jim Lemuel Wilson, August 23, 2019 3:17pm

US President Donald Trump presented Boston Celtics legend Bob Cousy with the Presidential Medal of Freedom at The Oval Office on Friday (Philippine time) to recognize the hardwood wizard as "one of the all-time greats in the history of sports," reported.

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer and six-time National Basketball Association champion, meanwhile, was full of emotions as, he said, he now feels ‘complete’. 

"This acknowledgment allows me to complete my life circle," Cousy said during the awards ceremony.

"I can stop chasing a bouncing ball. The Presidential Medal of Freedom allows me to reach a level of acceptance in our society I never once ever dreamed of," the Boston added.

The Medal of Freedom, the US's highest civilian honor, celebrates individuals for their "especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the U.S., to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors." Cousy is the second recipient of the award this year, following Golf legend Tiger Woods.

The 91-year-old Cousy also said that the US has been ‘great’ throughout his life even though he lived during the time of the Great Depression and race segregation in the country. He also called Trump the ‘most extraordinary’ president in his lifetime.

"I know in your world, you're well on your way to making America great again," Cousy told Trump. "In my world, it's been great for 91 years. Only in America could my story have been told."

Cousy was the third overall pick by the Tri-Cities Blackhawks, now Atlanta Hawks, in the 1950 NBA Rookie Darft. He played for the Celtics from 1950 to 1963, winning six NBA titles alongside Bill Russell.

He also had a short stint as a playing coach for the Cincinnati Royals in the 1969-1970 season. Though he didn't play again after his first season as playing coach for the Royals, he did stay as the top tactician of the squad until 1973.

Cousy also coached the Boston College from 1963 to 1969.

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