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CLEVELAND (WJW) — In celebration of 75 years of the National Basketball Association, a Legends Awards brunch was held Sunday as part of the 2022 All-Star Weekend festivities.

Plenty of league greats were in attendance for the event put on by the National Basketball Retired Players Association at the Huntington Convention Center of Cleveland, but three legends were especially honored for their work off the court.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar accepted the NBA Legends Social Justice Award, Jerry West received the Legend of the Year Award and Dikembe Mutombo got the Global Ambassador Award.

Prior to the All-Star weekend Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff made clear that acknowledging the achievements of those who came before was an important aspect of the national event.

“The reason why we’re here, and the reason why we’re afforded all the luxuries, and all those things that we have now are on the backs of those giants,” Bickerstaff, whose father Bernie was also a NBA coach, told the Associated Press. “And we have to have a respect for that, we have to have an appreciation for that. All the things that they had to go through to carry this league to this point, we have to respect and appreciate it.”

The legends were also honored during the 2022 NBA All-Star Game halftime.