NBA legend Jerry West honored with Presidential Medal of Freedom

President Trump awarded basketball legend Jerry West the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, on Thursday, persevering with a run by Trump of recognizing American sports activities greats.

Trump stated West “hard-earned” the medal, citing the West Virginia native’s years as a adorned participant, govt, and supporter of the nation’s struggle veterans.

Former NBA basketball participant and basic supervisor Jerry West acquired the Presidential Medal of Freedom within the Oval Workplace on Thursday. (AP Picture/Alex Brandon)

The 81-year-old West was elected to the Basketball Corridor of Fame in 1980 six years after he retired from the NBA following a 14-year profession with the Los Angeles Lakers.

When West retired in 1974, he was the third-leading scorer in NBA historical past with 25,192 factors in 932 video games, behind solely Wilt Chamberlain and Oscar Robertson.

President Trump shaking hands with Jerry West at the White House. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

President Trump shaking palms with Jerry West on the White Home. (AP Picture/Alex Brandon)

On Thursday, West famous his humble beginnings and the place sports activities has taken him, saying, “it by no means ceases to amaze me the locations you may go on this world chasing a basketball.”

West received only one title with the Lakers as a participant, in 1972. Nonetheless, he burnished his resume as a scout and govt by successful six titles with the Lakers and two extra with the Golden State Warriors. He’s presently a member of the Los Angeles Clippers govt board.

West is the eighth basketball determine to obtain the Presidential Medal of Freedom, becoming a member of Invoice Russell, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Jordan, John Wood, Pat Summitt, Dean Smith and Bob Cousy, who acquired the medal from Trump final month at age 91.

Golfer Tiger Woods acquired the identical honor earlier this 12 months after his victory at The Masters event.