SPRINGFIELD, MA – Magic Johnson showed what a great speaker and class act he is as he graciously accepted the honor of being inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame this past weekend along with his fellow 1992 Olympic Dream Team.
Johnson honored Chuck Daly (July 20, 1930 – May 9, 2009), who coached the Dream Team to the men’s’ basketball gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics.
Johnson went on to say, “I want to thank all these guys because it was my greatest basketball thrill was to play with all of them and to go into the Olympics and win the Gold medal.”
“Last but not least I want to thank Michael Jordan for setting the tone for us and a winning attitude the greatest player when he came in the door we knew it was all about business.”
Johnson went on to thank the rest of the dream team including Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, David Robinson, John Stockton, Karl Malone, Clyde Drexler, Chris Mullin, Scottie Pippen and Larry Bird.
After Magic spoke, it was Larry Bird’s turn to speak.
Bird made his acceptance speech and went on to quip about the 1960′s dream team:
“There’s a lot of debate going around, who had the best team, the ones in the ’60s or the one in ’92,” Bird said. “I don’t know who had the best team, but I know that the team in 1960 was a hell of a lot tougher than we were. Because I couldn’t imagine the ’92 team getting in covered wagons for eight days [the crowd starts laughing], going across the country, jumping in the Atlantic Ocean , swimming for six days, then walking 3,000 miles to the Coliseum in Rome … “For a dollar a day!”
The 1960 U.S. Olympic gold medal winners were inducted into the Hall of Fame as well. However, unlike the 1992 Dream Team, the 1960 team were not allowed to play in the Olympics as pros. Even at amateur status back then they still blew away the competition by over 40 points a game, and had future NBA Hall of Fame inductees like Jerry West and Oscar Robinson leading the team.
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