WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama has welcomed the NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers to the White House.
An avid basketball fan, Obama says no team exemplified excellence on the court more than the Lakers did last year in winning their 15th league championship.
Obama said Monday he was especially excited to meet Lakers coach Phil Jackson, who has won 10 championships, though he didn't hesitate to remind the team that six of those victories were with Obama's hometown Chicago Bulls.
Obama commended the players not only for their athletic achievements, but also their work off the court. The players held a fitness clinic for Washington-area school children Monday, and several players are donating money to relief efforts in Haiti.