Meadowlark Lemon, a legendary basketball player who was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2003 and played for the Harlem Globetrotters from 1954-78, died at the age of 83 in Scottsdale, Ariz. Sunday. 

His passing was confirmed by his wife to the New York Times

One of only five Globetrotters to have his jersey retired by the basketball team, Lemon was an entertainer and "showman"—affectionately known as the “Clown Prince of Basketball"—while playing for the world famous squad. His website claims he played 16,000 games during his career. 

The Times' obituary described him as a "gifted athlete with an entertainer’s hunger for the spotlight" and one of the most famous and beloved Globetrotters in the team's storied history. Lemon was well known for expertly pulling off the bucket full of confetti gag. 

Lemon was a slick ballhandler and a virtuoso passer, and he specialized in the long-distance hook, a trick shot he made with remarkable regularity. But it was his charisma and comic bravado that made him perhaps the most famous Globetrotter. For 22 years, until he left the team in 1978, Lemon was the Trotters’ ringmaster, directing their basketball circus from the pivot. He imitated Tatum’s reams, like spying on the opposition’s huddle, and added his own.

The team and many of Lemon's admirers offered memories and sympathies on Twitter.  

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