Bill Russell: Being criticized by Trump is the 'biggest compliment you can get'
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NBA legend Bill Russell praised LeBron James and CNN host Don Lemon after President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump: I hope voters pay attention to Dem tactics amid Kavanaugh fight South Korea leader: North Korea agrees to take steps toward denuclearization Graham calls handling of Kavanaugh allegations 'a drive-by shooting' MORE attacked the two men, saying they “must be doing something right.”

Russell also cited Reps. Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersKavanaugh hires attorney amid sexual assault allegations: report Scalise: Democrats need to denounce political violence Women wield sizable power in ‘Me Too’ midterms MORE (D-Calif.) and John LewisJohn LewisCongress losing faith in Nobel Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi Obama to urge rejection of 'authoritarian politics and policies' in speech Florida's Darren Soto fends off Dem challenge from Alan Grayson MORE (D-Ga.), as well as NFL players attacked by Trump, saying that at “this time & place for any African American …to be criticised by @realdonaldtrump means you must be doing something right!”

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“As I have said before- Its the biggest compliment you can get,” he added. 

The former Celtics star and coach has previously shared images of him kneeling while wearing his Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor, in solidarity with athletes who kneel during the national anthem. Russell was the first African-American to coach a major professional sports team.

Trump has attacked players who kneel during the anthem to protest racial injustice.

Trump targeted James and Lemon in a tweet late Friday, writing that James "was just interviewed by the dumbest man on television, Don Lemon" who "made Lebron look smart, which isn’t easy to do."

Others have come forward to defend James, including NBA legend Michael Jordan, who praised James for "doing an amazing job for his community."

Lemon interviewed James earlier this week about the former Cleveland Cavaliers star's new "I Promise" school for at-risk children in his hometown of Akron, Ohio.

The NBA player was critical of Trump during the interview, saying that the president was trying to use sports to "divide" the country.