Miami Heat president Pat Riley has become the fifth person to win the Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award, The AP reports. Previous winners include Tommy Heinsohn (2009), Jack Ramsay and Tex Winter (2010) and Lenny Wilkens (2011).
"This is not an award," Riley said. "This is something somebody bestows on you. I'm very honored that the coaches association would do this."
The formal presentation of the award will happen Tuesday night at the American Airlines Arena before Game 4 of the NBA Finals where the Miami Heat will take on the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Sun-Sentinel reports.
Dallas Mavericks coach, Rick Carlisle, who is president of the National Basketball Coaches Association, will present Riley with the award.
For Riley, winning this award was very personal. As coaches, he and Chuck Daly were rivals, but eventually, they became very close friends. He recalled the last time he saw Chuck, who died of pancreatic cancer in 2009.
Pat was leaving Chuck's hospital room after a visit. "He looked at me. I looked back at him for a pause, and he just sort of said 'I'll see you later,'" Riley said. "I'll never forget it."
The award also comes around the 20th anniversary of the 1992 Dream Team, which Chuck Daly coached to a Gold Medal at the 1992 Olympics.
Daly also led the Detroit Pistons to the NBA championship in 1989 and 1990. Players from those championship teams attended his funeral as did Pat Riley, Rick Carlisle, NBA Commissioner David Stern, and many others, ESPN reports.
Walking away from the church after the funeral, Riley put on a pair of sunglasses to mask his tears.
"I think we all aspired to be like him," Riley said. "We couldn't."
But Daly always saw something wonderful in Riley, as a coach, and as a friend.
They were both very stylish and loved to shop. They respected one another's fashion sense and coaching styles.
"When it came to coaching, Chuck Daly always felt that Pat Riley was one of the best," Rick Carlisle said according to The AP.