President Donald Trump hailed U.S. House Minority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana as “the bravest man in this room” during the president’s remarks at the National Republican Congressional Committee Dinner in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday.

Scalise, 53, narrowly survived a mass shooting during practice for the annual congressional baseball game in June 2017.

Doctors said Scalise was in "imminent risk of death" when he arrived by airlift to a Washington hospital with massive blood loss and significant damage to bones and internal organs. The single gunshot to the hip he took when a gunman opened fire on Republicans as they practiced for the charity baseball game required multiple surgeries.

“It wasn’t looking so good,” Trump said, recalling a visit to the hospital the night of the shooting when Scalise remained in critical condition. “The doctors said it wasn’t looking so good.”

But Scalise recovered and ended up playing in the congressional baseball game the following year – returning to his spot at second base. Trump, who watched the game, said he was amazed that Scalise fielded the first pitch.

“It was hit hard. A really hard ground ball. And he got down, blocked that sucker,” Trump said. “I said, ‘Is this a movie we’re watching?’ The first pitch.”

It’s not the first time that Trump has given a special shout out to Scalise, who has become a close ally of the president. During his State of the Union address last year, Trump praised Scalise as “the legend from Louisiana.” At the NRCC event last year, Trump also remarked on Scalise’s “courage.”

“I’m glad your on our side, Steve,” Trump said during his Wednesday address.

Follow Elizabeth Crisp on Twitter, @elizabethcrisp.