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Saturday, January 15th, 2011 at 1:00 pm  |  67 responses

Original Old School: Rare Earth

SLAM 28: Even without hops, Larry Bird took basketball to new heights.

Larry Bird changed the game, and gathered a few haters while he was at it. In this feature from SLAM 28, Scoop Jackson gave his account on what Bird meant to him and the League. Surely one of the most polarizing players in NBA history, regardless of race, you could not doubt Bird’s skills. Doing so will only make you look foolish. Ed.

Larry Bird

by Scoop Jackson

My life with Larry Bird is different from my life with DOC, DT or anyone else. Somewhat vicarious. I’ve had these “experiences” since ’78 that connect us. Sports Illustrated had this picture of his jump shot in motion across a two-page spread. You could see the release, the rotation of the ball, the finish. For some reason, that stuck with me. Carl Nicks, a ballplayer from Chicago who ran with Bird, used to come home from Indiana State and talk madness about this white boy. He’d tell stories that were hard to believe. At times, he claimed that Larry Bird was the best basketball player he’d ever seen, and a lot of people thought Carl was on crack. But I used to listen, because the more Carl talked, the more my mind went back to that picture.

The last Saturday of March, ’79, I had a basketball game to play at the neighborhood Y. It was for the league championship, but a lot of us didn’t want to go, because DePaul was playing in the Final Four that afternoon. They were playing Indiana State. Every young brotha in Chi was trying to see Mark Aguirre do his thang, but many simply wanted to see if Carl Nicks was telling the truth. Kids on both teams begged for the game to be postponed until after the DePaul-I. State game, but the Y wasn’t having it.

Somewhere in the middle of the fourth quarter, someone brought a television from the Y’s office and plugged it into an outlet in the corner of the gym. He was yelling as he ran across the court with the TV, “DePaul is losing! DePaul is losing!” As he hooked the 13-inch black-and-white up, the stands emptied and the game stopped. About 100 people piled on top of each another—myself included—to watch the rest of DePaul’s season. For some reason, we couldn’t imagine Mark Aguirre losing; it was incomprehensible to us. We couldn’t grasp it until Billy Packer (who earlier that had said publicly that Bird was overrated) tossed out Larry Bird’s stats for the game. Bird had only missed one shot the whole game and scored 37 points.

Too depressed to finish the game, many of the players just left. As did I. I hustled home, found that Sports Illustrated, cut that photo of Bird out and put it on my bedroom wall.

The telephone rings. It’s ’75, and Georgia Bird is at home tending to the regular business of running a house: barely being able to make ends meet, trying to get bills paid, waiting on tables to keep food in the fridge and a family together. Her husband is calling home to tell her he loves her, but Joe Bird has a shotgun in his hands. The next sound Georgia Bird hears is the death of her husband.

Larry Bird was 18 years old when his father committed suicide. Throughout his career, it was rarely discussed, which is as it should have been. Bird being able to handle his father’s suicide privately doesn’t mean that it didn’t have the same effect on his life that Michael Jordan’s father’s death had on his. Bird said he “wandered around for a week numb” afterwards. At times, the “numbness” returns, and Bird deals with it. Privately. It is part of what shapes Bird into the man that he has become. Quiet, somewhat removed, but open, honest and cordial.

He grew up broke. Couldn’t pay attention, could change his mind. Broke. “Indiana poor,” as people in Gary used to say. He knew he could play basketball, but money limited him to where he could show it. A year before his father died, he tried Indiana University. Bobby Knight. After one month, Bird came home and did the JuCo thing for a minute, but that didn’t work either. Understanding the fam’s need for some financial structure, Bird came back to French Lick to hustle as a garbage collector.

One year later, Bird looked around and realized that, as much love as he had for his father, he couldn’t be like him in some ways. He could not be stuck in a town of 2,106 people and not attempt to take a chance on life. Like many “brothas” surrrounded by the concrete and cages of the pj’s, Bird needed basketball to get out of his “ghetto.” Make his Mom’s life better. The escape. The way out. He enrolled at Indiana State University in Terre Haute and did two things: He got settled, then he got busy.

“The Only Great White Hope” is what he was dubbed. He hated it. He understood it, but he still hated it. For the next four or five years, Larry Bird built a basketball resume matched by only a small, small number. He was becoming black America’s worst nightmare: A white boy with game.

It’s ’84. Doing an early celebration of birthday No. 21. Drunk, I left an after-class party to get back to the crib and watch an early-season meeting between the Boston Celtics and the Philly Seven-Sixers (ebonics). Dr. J v. Larry Bird. The Sporting News called the Celtics-Sixers rivalry the best in the history of sports, and with me lovin’ Doc and not lovin’ Bird, there was nothing more important in my life at that time.

That night, I watched Larry Bird play as if he were possessed. I was so shook watching him play, I got sober. It was unreal. In less than 30 minutes, he dropped 42 points on Doc, talkin’ shit the whole time. I don’t know if it was the performance or something he said, but Doc lost it and a fight broke out. Julius and Larry had each other by the throats. I sat on the edge of my bed for two hours after that game–in silence. I couldn’t believe what Bird had done. I couldn’t believe Larry Bird was that good and that arrogant. He verbalized it, and he backed it up, Ali-style. And did it on Doc. My girlfriend came by to console me; she continuously asked if I was all right. I never answered, because I knew that from that moment on, I had to not only give Larry Bird his… I had to like him.

In the hallway of the Hyatt Regency in Chicago, during the ’88 All-Star weekend, I met Larry Bird. I stuck out my hand, “Hey Larry.”

“How ya doin’?” he answered with his almost-down-South twang. My partner Biskit did the same thing; Larry said the same thing. Later on that day, we watched Bird put on a shooting display from the Gods. He won the three-point shoot-out (again), but it was the way he did it that left us in awe. He never took off his warm-up jacket! That, and his raising that one finger immediately as the ball left his hand on the last shot was one of the greatest displays of vanity I’d ever seen. I’ll admit this now (and my cousin Dre will have my back, because he was there too), Larry Bird’s performance that day was better than Jordan’s or Dominique’s.

The King and I. Understand before reading this that I am a Bernard King fan. The season after he “averaged” 50 against Detroit and went head-up against Gang Green (the Celtics) and took them to seven games, BK john-blazed the League by averaging almost 33 a game. Four points better than the closest challenger. But that challenger did more than just score–he kinda did a lot more. That challenger got the MVP over Bernard that year. I screamed racism.

Of course, Larry Bird was that challenger. And for the first time in my self-admitted nationalist life, I had hatred for Larry Bird. Even though Bird hadn’t done anything, that “black thang” inside of me got pissed. The “white man’s system of oppression and power” had seized decision-making control over one of the few areas I could hold on to as somewhat sacred in a black man’s life: basketball. But it was all a part of learning the game.

“I’ve always thought of basketball as a black man’s game,” Bird said once. “I just tried to do everything I could to fit in.” The race game that Bird had to play was one that was probably more similar to what Jackie Robinson, Willie Mays and Hank Aaron had to go through in baseball than many of us want to believe. Bird is right when he says basketball is a black man’s game: physically, economically and spiritually. But that doesn’t mean that the game is exclusive to us. The black theory of white men can’t jump exists, but the overlooked theory in “black ball” is: Don’t foul the white boys, because they don’t miss free throws.

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  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Very quite possibly, the Greatest of All Times. Better than Michael.
    I am just biased towards Earvin, though.
    1A and 1B.

  • http://crohoops.com Tomislav

    The greatest white player in the history of basketball, no question about that.
    “Larry Bird played basketball so well, sometimes he made my dick hard.” Scoop’s line is probably the best line in the history of basketball journalism.

  • reald1

    LARRY BIRD HIMSELF CALLED MICHAEL THE GREATEST PLAYER OF ALL,nuff respect to bird though.

  • Brickshooting J

    A very fine piece of writing. Thanks Scoop.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    Philo, don’t ever say Larry Bird is better than Michael, wan’t proof that Larry couldn’t defend Michael? 63. In. The. Boston. Garden.

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    Classic material.

  • http://slamonline.com Ugh

    God, Scoop has so many problems.

  • KB8toSG8

    @BlackPhantom…..no disrespect to Jordan but Magic DANCED…..DANCED on him in the Playoffs when they played. And Larry held his own against Earvin. See?

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Great piece.
    “I’ll say this once and only once: Larry Bird played basketball so well, sometimes he made my dick hard.”
    ROFL!!! I definitely wasn’t expecting him to say something like that. Top 5 best SLAM quotes EVER!!

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Ah, in other words co-sign Tomislav.

  • http://itsahardwoodlife.blogspot.com omphalos

    Bird isn’t better than MJ, definitely best white player of all time. Also, even if Earvin “danced” on Jordan in the Finals, who won the series and Finals MVP? Come on man, both Bird and Magic admit Jordan is a cut above them and everybody else before or since.

  • Yann Blavec

    First copy of Slam I ever bought. Been a subscriber ever since.

  • 2KInsider

    Michael Jordan never won a playoff game against Larry Bird ever.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    I am telling the truth, my brethren. Larry Bird is better than Michael Jordan. And, possibly, better than Earvin.
    Well, not quite better than Earvin.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    And, I am about to find a Terry Cummings throwback jersey.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    Philo, please enlighten us all on how Larry Bird is better than Michael Jordan

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Phantom:
    It is really not hard to make that determination.
    All that I will say, for now, is this;
    The only clear advantages that Michael has over Larry is athleticism, and defense. That is it. Everything else, Bird is better.
    It is understood that that reality is quite difficult to bear for many.
    It is the truth, though.
    Shooting, passing, leadership, ball handling, (even) scoring, (even, as well) rebounding, post play, hustle…
    Regarding hustle, how often have we seen Michael get on the floor for a loose ball as opposed to Joe Bird? That is leadership and hustle.
    And, the fact that Bird is the least athletic superstar in NBA History makes him that much more better than Michael. It is a greater dominance.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Oh, and, Larry has also stated that Earvin is the best he has ever seen. That includes himself, and it includes Michael Jordan.
    And, Bird is among the most highly regarded scouts in all of professional basketball.
    It is written.

  • 2KInsider

    We need to understand that the things said by Bird and Magic were to promote the NBA at the time. The understand marketing. Much like today when ex players say that Kobe is getting close to Jordan or LeBron could be the greatest ever. These fabricated statements are to promote the NBA to the uninformed masses. They are just trying to sell today’s game, or at least at the time they said these things.

  • http://skldflf.com Jukai

    Philo: Larry Bird’s best average was 30. Michael Jordan’s was 37.
    Truth is, Jordan was a superior scorer. True, Bird had the range, but that’s it: midrange, layups, dunks, driving, ball fakes, they are all even or belong to Jordan.
    Saying Larry Bird was a better scorer is just ignorant.
    So Jordan was a slightly better scorer, a slightly worse passer, a slightly worse rebounder, and a SUPERIOR defender, won 6 rings to 3, won 5 MVPs to 3, Jordan PLAYED longer, etc.
    Your comment about Larry’s lack of athleticism is absolutely unnecessary. I could easily come back and say that it was incredible Jordan was able to score so much without a 3-point shot… NO, the fact that Jordan was inconsistent from the three for all of his career should be held against him, the same as Larry’s lack of atheticsm should be held against him too. The fact that you laud Lebron’s amazing abilities yet downplay Larry’s lack thereof shows you just pick favorites.
    MJ also dove for lose balls a LOT, two of MJ’s most famous highlights come from him falling out of bounds but grabbing the ball and making an amazing pass before touching the ground. Please do not rewrite history to make Bird seem better.
    And this is coming from the guy who has stood up for Bird the past month.

  • paul

    Um best ever discussion starts and ends with Russell.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    Larry Bird was not a better scorer than MJ, LB-better passer, rebounder(as he should’ve been-he was 6″9′), shooter.
    MJ-better team leader(LB played with McHale and Parrish c’mon), scorer, 2,000,000 times better of a defender,they both have rings.(MJ-6,Lb-3) How about we compare accomplishments other than rings? MVPS: MJ-5, LB-3. All-NBA 1st Team: MJ-10 times, LB-9 times. All-NBA Defensive 1st Team: MJ-9 times, LB-0 (3 times 2nd team) All-Star Selections: MJ-14 LB-12 times. Michael beats Larry in every accomplishment I just named

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    And I haven’t really gotten started

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    Let alone, the fact Michael won a Defensive Player Of The Year Award AND lead the league in scoring 10 times

  • http://Philosopher.vision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Jukai:
    We both know that if a player is playing with multiple Hall of Fame players, scoring is not a prime neccessity. Bird’s case, this is especially true.
    Bird’s ball fakes are superior to Jordan’s.
    Also, hang back on the “ignorant”… You come with the “ignorant” more than you give yourself credit for, but anyways, back to said subject…
    When Michael wins his rings and MVPs, everyone else of merit is old and close to retirement. You know that, man.
    Jordan shot the three. He has set a Playoff record with the three. That argument is invalid on your part.
    As far as The King, I am merely stating that he is the very best today. In the world. That is all.
    And, o.k., you have seen Michael’s famous hustle play. If going by that formula, then, I am entirely sure that you have seen more Bird hustle plays.
    You are just “fronting” like you have not.

  • Lan

    Engrossing Article. Cheers Scoop

  • Jamal

    Sorry to get nit-picky here but Bias was actually the 2ND pick in the 1986 draft… for the record, its minor errors like this that diminish the credibility of this article. Thanks for playing though.

  • http://Philosopher.vision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Phantom:
    Everyone else was old.
    Michael’s accolades are padded because of that.

  • KB8toSG8

    @omphalos….

    You seriously didn’t seem to have seen that series. It wasn’t until Phil switched MJ with Pippen that Magic was controlled a bit. MJ couldn’t even touch Magic when Magic was on O.

    MJ-Better leader!?!?! WTF?! Bird played with McHale and Parish so he’s not a great leader?!?!MJ played with Pippen, Kerr and Rodman! He sucks as a leader then! That means the greatest leader is Hakeem.

    Athleticism enables player to play better D. Jordan was blessed with great athleticism. Bird was not. When you talk about shooting (jump shots), passing, court vision etc. (which aren’t dependent on athleticism) Bird has MJ beaten every time skill wise. Also he did everything he did with a BAD BACK people.

  • KB8toSG8

    For me Wilt is no.1 followed by 2A Earvin and 2B Bird and then MJ…..

  • KB8toSG8

    @BlackPhantom……..you wanna deal with stats? Then NEVER EVER say MJ is better than Wilt. NEVER EVVVVER!!!

  • KB8toSG8

    @The Philosopher…..agreed 100%. He had almost nil competition for those awards.

  • Precyse

    “Larry Bird played basketball so well, sometimes he made my dick hard.” Pause?

  • http://itsahardwoodlife.blogspot.com omphalos

    KB8toSG8; of course MJ couldn’t do much to stop Magic on offense, he was giving up 3 inches in height. Pippen was taller and obviously had a better chance at stopping him. No I haven’t seen the series, that was the year I was born haha, but the results don’t lie.

  • KB8toSG8

    Results say MJ failed at defending Magic. Bird held his own against Magic. Pippen could contain Magic. Phil is a genius. Regardless of how good MJ was on D, he couldn’t lay a finger on Magic. Same with Bird. Magic too couldn’t shut Bird down on D and vice versa.

  • http://dosfdjkal.com Jukai

    @Philo: wow, I gotta start with the Jordan-3 point comment, especially when throwing around the ignorant word. Jordan was a subpar three-point shooter, the master of the term streaky. He’d toss them up like hotcakes when they were going in, but that was only about 40% of the time, he’d usually take one or two then stop for the rest of the game. People who really don’t know much about Jordan love to bring up that 6-three quarter in the playoffs (not knowing that he chucked three more in the second half, one of which was an airball, to try and pad that record even further). It was an anomaly, Jordan was hot and the guys weren’t playing Jordan tight because he scored the rest of his 35-points on drives and leaning jumpers. Jordan was a terrible three-point shooter in the first half of his career, and streaky in the second part of it. This isn’t up for debate, and you made yourself look foolish when you were trying to look unbiased.
    Secondly, I get the point that playing with HOFers means you shoot the ball less, but let’s start off by saying Parish isn’t a HOF because he scored, it’s cause he rebounded and defended and was all-around great (and he even admits that if he never played with Bird and McHale, he would not be a HOFer. It’s a SLAM article, I’ll pull it up if you want). So really, the only true offensive force that Bird shared the ball with was McHale. Yeah, getting McHale his shots meant Bird would score less, but it also meant that Bird would be double teamed less, leading to easier percentages. The fact that Jordan averaged around 50% shooting WITHOUT a true offensive second option (Pippen was good for 20 points, not really that great offensively) shows what great skill Jordan had.
    And the hustle thing is just dumb. I’ve seen more hustle highlights from jordan than I’ve seen from Bird: I guess cause Bird is white and unathletic, him diving on the ground for the ball and bashing his skull in is all impressive, but when Jordan JUMPS into the crowd and saves the ball and throws it in while still in the air, THAT’S FREAKING HUSTLE, even if it looks graceful because Jordan was gifted like that. Jordan dove out of balance, jumped on the floor, wrestled for the ball from people’s hands, he was the epitome of hustle, that’s honestly why Jordan is revelled so much: he tried his hardest both offensively, defensively, and in broken hustle plays. Bird did too, but he just wasn’t as good as Jordan.

  • http://dosfdjkal.com Jukai

    lemme clear up a confusing sentence:
    *six three-pointer half
    there ya go

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Calm down there, cowboy. You are not saying anything at all that is not already universally known.
    And, how is Jordan inconsistent from 3, when he put up roughly the same numbers from there most every year? That is consistency from 3.
    Also, no one said Parish is a Hall of Famer because of his scoring prowess, so… (even though Parrish is grossly underrated in that area)
    And, me unbiased? You know better than that.
    LONG… LIVE… THE KING, man.
    As far as Jordan performing his feats without “this supposed” second option is off. Pippen was a great scorer with good percentages. You know all of this. I do not understand…
    And, it appears that a reason that you have seen more hustle plays from Jordan is because, it is becoming more obvious that you have not seen much of Bird. I mean, you once told me that Bird cannot dribble.
    THAT is dumb. But, I apologize for that. I am not here to insult you. I do not have the need to do that. To me, that is ignorant. You get my “drift”?

  • the dude

    This is something i’ve been curious about for awhile: Philosopher, i’m curious which, if any, philosophers you would recommend that i try reading. Who’re your favorites? PLEASE don’t tell me that you just named yourself that for no reason.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    I remember this one game against the Celtics in ’85 I saw freakin’ intercept a Larry Bird pass in mid-air with his feet off the ground like a wide receiver

  • tavoris

    Bird and Magic were both in awe of Jordan’s greatness. One look at the original Dream Team should galvanize that argument.

    That being said, Bird was a baaaaaaaaad man.

  • tavoris

    Bird was a MUCH, MUCH better rebounder than MJ. Bird-who averaged less than 2 attempts from 3) wasn’t that much more prolific or accurate a 3 point shooter than MJ. MJ was just as money from midrange as Bird. Bird’s assist numbers were better, but not by much.

    Sure, Magic used 2 murder Jordan until Pippen got to town. But Bird got baked by Jordan, Nique, Detlef Shrempf, Chuck Person, and just about any other 3 in the game.

    All of this doesn’t take away from the fact that Bird is one of the 2 or 3 best all-around players the league as ever seen-as well as being in a distant lead as it’s hardest worker.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    *I saw Michael Jordan
    And I wasn’t born in ’85, I saw it on YouTube, the games was in 1985

  • http://skldflf.com Jukai

    The Philo:
    Jordan’s percentages from the 3 throughout his career: 17%, 16%, 20%, 13%, 28%, 38%, 31%, 28% 35%, 50%, 42%, 37%, 24%, 19%, 29%
    Oh yeah, just about as consistent as your logic.
    Secondly, you said “We both know that if a player is playing with multiple Hall of Fame players, scoring is not a prime neccessity. Bird’s case, this is especially true.”
    Besides misspelling necessity, you inferred that playing with HOFers makes scoring easier. I was correcting your assumption, by telling you that Parish wasn’t really a scorer so it didn’t make Bird’s life easier. Also, Pippen was THE MAN on the Bulls (which was an all-defense team with very few scorers) and was given the greenlight to do as much scoring as he wanted to, and mustered 22 points a game. You say “I know this” but you’ve seen me argue with JTaylor a bajillion times about how overrated Pippen was as a scorer. I get there are certain techniques to debating, but you really should exclude blatantly false statements like that (not that it’s stopped you before).
    Finally, I never said Bird was a bad dribble, but he was pretty mediocre. To move quicker, Bird had a really high dribble, and he often got away with a lot because of his fantastic footwork which allowed him to spin and break distance from his defenders, ESPECIALLY once he picked up his dribble. He wasn’t breaking cats down with crosses and he wasn’t driving inbetween five defenders to get into the paint. His dribble was impressive for someone who was 6’9, but you certainly could not call his dribble fantastic.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Impressive, but not fantastic. cool.
    I spelled necessity incorrectly. Uh, oh…
    So, as idiotic and as inconsistent as my logic is, at least you are well, consistent. At least you are not now saying that Bird is a better shooter than Kobe. Don’t ever do that, man. smh

  • @JdotD

    OK so am I the ONLY one who NEEDS to see this ’78 sports illustrated pic of Birds jumper. Where can this be found?!

  • http://skldflf.com Jukai

    Impressive and fantastic are vastly differently. Open a dictionary, doofus.
    I dissed you on yer typo cause you gave Zoom a hard time before about his spelling. Consistency, y’know?
    I’ve softened my stance on the Kobe/Bird thing because my friend brought up the olympics and Kobe’s inability to spot-up (and he’s right). But don’t fool yerself: Bird had his spots on the floor. It’s what a lot of people don’t like to admit.
    Anything else I have to respond to or are you just gonna give up?

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    And, Zoom does not need your help. At all.
    No one ever said that Bird did not have his “spots”. What player does not have spots?

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    I’m sorry, Jukai. (I’m not)
    You mean to tell me that all the basketball tapes that you have watched;
    all the countless hours you have spent studying film, and you did not know that Kobe is not a better shooter than Bird?
    You are now conceding?
    Fraud.

  • http://skldflf.com Jukai

    Yes, I admit when I am wrong: it’s something you should learn the next time you blatantly make up something to impress people on the internet.
    Who does not have spots: Reggie Miler, Ray Allen, Kobe Bryant (and probably Jerry West, Rick Barry).
    My argument was, if you needed to get into your spots to score, you’re not a better shooter. But yes, I will concede that Kobe has trouble shooting when it’s not off the bounce or off the dribble, so I will say I am wrong.
    Looks like you’ve dropped our other argument though. Hopefully you’ve been “educated.”

  • http://Philosopher.vision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Regarding your last point, yes, I have been quite educated. I am not ashaned to be educated, for I do not aim to impress anyone on the internet. That includes you. If that were the case, I would show my ass to everyone and beg SLAM for a writing gig, such as you have on more than one occasion. As I have told you on numerous exchanges between us, I have no agenda(s). And, I hope SLAM does that for you, for, it seems like you need it. I would read you. You are pretty good.

    Anyways, all of those players that you tried to name have “spots”. Again, what player do not have a “spot” or, “spots”?
    And, “vastly differently”?
    Come on, man.

  • http://Philosopher.vision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    -what player *does not*
    -*ashamed*

  • http://skldflf.com Jukai

    I mean, there’s the whole lying thing again. I have never begged SLAM for a gig, that’s never happened. Show me anything, ANYTHING where I’ve asked for that. You just made it up, you do it all the time. I don’t know who you are trying to impress, but you clearly get a kick about people acknowledging you.
    Please, just stick with the facts.
    Bryant literally has no spots on the floor. He will shoot anywhere. I’ve rescinded my comment about Kobe being a better shooter, but Bird ran to his spots, ALL the time. Kobe gets open. I mean, disagree with ya want, that’s fine. But don’t make anything up. That’s your specialty.

  • http://Philosopher.vision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Jukai, let me find out that you are really a fraud.

  • http://Philosopher.vision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Anyways, I will get back to you in a few hours.

  • http://skldflf.com Jukai

    Okay, uh, go ahead, let’s see what changes in a few hours.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    Jukai vs. Philo.
    So epic it can’t be contained to one thread.
    LOL

  • http://www.need4sheed.com Tarzan Cooper

    CRIPPLE FIGHT!!!!!!!

  • http://www.need4sheed.com Tarzan Cooper

    Impressive and fantastic are vastly differently. Open a dictionary, doofus.,,,,,,,,,
    i love it when people get so petty that they feel the need to point out typos and minor mistakes, only to have it backfire on them. ….jukai, you doofus

  • ErnieD

    They had Crack in the ’70s?

  • http://fklsdf.com Jukai

    Tarzan: How’s Philo’s d taste, bro? You’re sucking on it so hard, you must have broken the skin at this point. But hey, go on a racial tirade on how Kevin Love is only good because the white media is out to crush every black ball player ever and then go on to side with a guy claiming a well known racist is “his boy.” Whatever floats yer boat, man.
    Plus if I would make fun of typos, I’d need an entire SLAM article to decipher even one of your posts. It’s like someone took a sh*t on remedial English.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    ^Quite the imagination.
    How becoming…

  • http://fklsdf.com Jukai

    Still waiting for you to prove me a fraud, Philo.

  • http://minusthebars.blogspot.com don

    Great, great read. I hold nothing but respect for the basketball talent and career of Larry Bird.

  • gakbrenti

    the reason i played basketball is after watch bird on video on my cousin home. i went back home and start practice. thanks bird.

  • RockCity

    Great article… Bird = GOAT

  • souljah868

    Greatest player? Stats? All the greats have stats to back it up. Throw ‘em out for a sec. You have to had watched Bird play to understand his greatness. Was no MJ on defense, but with the game on the line, who’s comin up with that ball? Who’s hitting a game winning three? Who’s sealing the deal with a clutch rebound. LB got it done. Plain and simple.
    If you want stats, what was Boston’s record the year Bird sat out? What happened to Parish and McHale then?
    LB, great rookie, great veteran, great coach.
    Something magical happened when you put 4 other guys around him. Still dream of him playing.

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