In this file photo taken on April 6, 2009, Larry Bird (R) and Earvin 'Magic' Johnson walk on the court to be honored for the 30th anniversary of their match up in 1979 NCAA Championship Game between Indiana State and Michigan State prior to the Michigan State Spartans playing against the North Carolina Tar Heels during the 2009 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball National Championship game at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan.
Andy Lyons/Getty Images North America/AFP
Johnson, Bird to get joint NBA lifetime honor
(Agence France-Presse) - May 16, 2019 - 11:08am

LOS ANGELES – Former rivals Magic Johnson and Larry Bird are to receive a joint Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2019 NBA Awards, the league announced on Wednesday (Thursday Manila time).

Johnson and Bird forged an epic rivalry during the 1980s when the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics were locked in a long-running battle for basketball supremacy.

The NBA said the duo would be honored with the award at a ceremony in Los Angeles on June 24. The two previous recipients of the award are Bill Russell (2017) and Oscar Robertson (2018).

Johnson and Bird's rivalry captured the imagination of basketball fans during their heyday, and helped drive the success of the modern NBA.

The two men both won three NBA Most Valuable Player Awards and are members of the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame.

They were also members of USA Basketball's 1992 Olympic gold-medal-winning "Dream Team."

Both spent their entire careers with one team, Johnson winning five NBA crowns with the Lakers and Bird three with the Celtics.

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