Basketball great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar said on Tuesday that he is battling a rare form of blood cancer but his long-term prognosis is very good.
The 62-year-old member of the NBA Hall of Fame told the Los Angeles Times he had chronic myeloid leukemia, a cancer of the blood and bone marrow. The disease was diagnosed in December.
"The word 'leukemia' is a very frightening word," he said. "In many instances it's a killer and it's something that you have to deal with in a very serious and determined way if you're going to beat it."
The NBA's all-time leading scorer said he was being treated with a medicine that specifically targets the abnormal protein that causes leukemia.
"I responded well to the treatment," he said. "I just want that to continue to keep happening."
Jabbar, who played for the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers, was a six times NBA champion and most valuable player. He is the NBA's all-time leading scorer with 38,387 points.