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Magic Johnson honored at Emmitt Smith celebrity event in Dallas

Posted 7:39pm on Monday, May. 12, 2014

DALLAS -- The fifth annual Emmitt Smith Celebrity Invitational got under way Friday night with a glamorous, star-studded party at the Omni Hotel in downtown Dallas.

Stars arriving on the blue carpet included: former Dallas Cowboys Daryl 'Moose' Johnston, Darren Woodson, Jay Novacek, Nate Newton, Drew Pearson and Thomas 'Hollywood' Henderson; a pair of Heisman Trophy winners and NFL legends Marcus Allen and Tim Brown; former NFL players Eric Dickerson, Jay Humphrey, Richard Dent, Rickey Jackson; Basketball Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman; former Major League Baseball players Joe Carter, David Justice and Kenny Lofton; former Mavs players Mark Aguirre and Michael Finley, former Mavs head coach Avery Johnson; Jake Pavelka, star of season 14 of The Bachelor; Nashville recording artist Billy Dawson; and Indianapolis Colts running back Trent Richardson.

But the biggest star of the night was honoree and NBA legend Magic Johnson. Along with his wife, Cookie, Magic accepted the inaugural Roger Staubach Award trophy donated by Tiffany & Co., recognizing individuals who have brought together the world of sports/entertainment and business to make an extraordinary impact on the lives of children and youth. It is the first award outside of the Navy that Staubach, the legendary Cowboys quarterback, has put his name on.

The entire night was really cool, but when Smith, Staubach and Johnson made their way down the blue carpet, there was extra buzz in the air. While Smith and Staubach were asked about the Cowboys draft from the night before, I was able to overcome being just a tad star-struck and talk to Magic Johnson.

"I am very honored to receive this award because Roger Staubach is a hero of mine," Johnson said. "It's not often that you get to meet your heroes. I am also here tonight to show my support for every thing that Pat and Emmitt are doing for these kids, because if someone had not believed in me when I was a kid, there would be no Magic."

This event, which was followed by a golf tournament Saturday at TPC Craig Ranch in McKinney, always captures the DFW social scene and is marked on the A-Listers' calendars. Past themes have included a 20-year reunion of the 1992 Super Bowl champion Dallas Cowboys and last year's Dancing with the Smiths party. With Alfonso Ribeiro (Carlton from The Fresh Prince of Bel Air) as the host and live entertainment from Darius Rucker, this night was among the best events I have been able to attend.

"Having the blessings of Roger and with Magic and Cookie here to honor them makes this night very special," Emmitt Smith said. "We are trying to take our event to the next level and this is only the beginning."

The weekend capped off by hitting the $1 million mark raised during the golf tournament  which was won by the team led by Kenny Lofton. For more information on the Pat & Emmitt Smith Charities' work, its Team 22 program, and upcoming events, visit here.

FOLLOW JAY BETSILL ON TWITTER @THEFAMOUSJAY

 

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