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View Full Version : I absolutely hated Larry Bird when he played but these are some really cool stories.



SLY WILLIAMS
09-17-2014, 09:25 PM
Reggie Miller (/u/so-cal_kid)

My rookie year, we played the Celtics at Market Square. It was a close game, but we could never beat them. It came down to free throws. There were about twenty seconds left, and we fouled Bird. We were down by 3 points. Bird went to the line to shoot two. I was standing on the line - and being a rookie dumbass and not realizing this was one of the best free throw shooters to ever the play the game, I tried to throw off his timing. As he went to shoot, I kind of said out the side of my mouth, "Hey! Hey!" He stopped right before he shot, looked at me, and said, "You got to be kidding me. Rook you got to be kidding me." He shot one. Boom. We are down 4 now. Bird gets the ball again, and before he shot, he said, "Rook, I'm the best shooter in the league right now. In the league. Understand? And you're up here trying to say something?" Boom. We were down by 5. What made it worse was that Kevin McHale and Danny Ainge were laughing their ***** off. I was thinking, "What a dumbass I am. You're up here talking **** to Larry Bird. He's at the free throw line." I felt so stupid.

Clyde Drexler (/u/so-cal_kid) I was guarding him my rookie year. He looks at me and he goes, "You can't stop me." I looked at him and I said, "Gosh. Boy you're so confident." He goes, "Confident? You're a rookie. You don't know anything." He proceeded to score like 10 straight points on me. Coach took me out the game, and he walks by and he's laughing at me.

Pat Riley (/u/timesnewboston) "If I had to choose a player to take a shot to save a game I'd choose Michael Jordan; If I had to choose a player to take a shot to save my life...I'd take Larry Bird."

Trash Talking Reputation

You know, they go back and say Bird was a trash talker. I never thought it was trash talking. He was whispering needles. We were playing at Worchester. I don’t even know who was guarding him. Larry supposedly poked him before they started and said, “Hey, what’s the scoring record in this building?” The guy asks why. And he says, “Well you’re guarding me aren’t you?”

K.C. Jones

Bird and Xavier McDaniel share a moment

We are playing in Seattle. Five seconds left on the clock and the score is tied and it is our timeout. In the huddle, I am thinking Xavier McDaniel is guarding Larry. So I said, “Now Kevin, you take the ball out and get it to Dennis and Dennis you can finish that.” Larry said, “Why don’t you just give me the ball and tell everybody else to get the hell out of the way?” So I said, “Larry you play, and I’ll coach.” And he said, “All right.” So I said, “Dennis, you take it out and you get it to Kevin. Kevin you get it to Larry and everybody else get the hell out of the way.” That is communication. Before the timeout was over, he leaves the huddle, and I said to myself, where is he going? And Xavier was right there and Bird said, “Xavier, I’m getting the ball. I’m going to take two dribbles to the left. I’m going to step back behind the three point line and stick it.” And that is what he did. So when he stepped back behind the line and released the ball, as soon as he released it, his arm was still in the air going to the dressing room. Game over.

#1 Craig Hodges

After Craig Hodges won the NBA All-Star Game Three-Point contest in Bird's absence, Hodges was asked if the victory was tainted because Bird hadn't participated. "He knows where he can find me," was Hodges retort. Told of Hodges' challenge, Bird replied, "Yeah, at the end of the Bulls bench."

#2 Chuck Daly

After Bird made four straight baskets with Rodman guarding him, he ran over to Chuck Daly and asked "who's guarding me, Chuck? Is anyone guarding me? You better get someone on me or I'm gonna go for 60." Then he'd continue the banter the next time he got the ball with Rodman inches away.

#7 Charles Smith

Knicks' forward Charles Smith remembers when Bird barked "Sorry, Charlie," as he released a long, last-second shot to win a game. "That kind of a thing makes you want to jump on a guy," said Smith.

#8 George McCloud

When the Indiana Pacers put rookie George McCloud on Bird in the closing minutes of a game, Bird yelled over to the Pacers bench, "Hey, I know you guys are desperate, but can't you find someone who at least has prayer?"

#9 1986 Mavericks Bench

On a West Coast trip in 1986, Bird told the entire Dallas Mavericks bench that after the time out, Ainge would inbounds the pass to DJ, who would hit Bird in the corner where Bird would step back and take a three. "So you got that?" Bird queried the bench. "I'm gonna stand right here. I'm not going to move. They'll pass me the ball, and the next sound you here will be the ball hitting the bottom of the net." And that's exactly what happened. Bird winked at the Mavericks before heading back down to the other end of the court.

#10 Dennis Rodman

Dennis Rodman on Larry Bird: "I would be all over him, trying to deny him the ball, and all Larry was doing was yelling at his teammates, I'm open! Hurry up before they notice nobody is guarding me!" then he would stick an elbow in my jaw and stick the jumper in my face, then he would start in on my coach "Coach you better get this guy out and send in somebody who's going to D me up, because its too easy when I'm wide open like this" http://www.reddit.com/r/nba/comments/2ea9y8/compilation_of_larry_bird_stories

Jeffy25
09-17-2014, 09:30 PM
I loved Bird growing up (I'm from a town right near his home town)

SLY WILLIAMS
09-17-2014, 09:35 PM
I loved Bird growing up (I'm from a town right near his home town)

He used to break my heart every year. I could not stand the guy. He drove me nuts as a Knicks fan but now looking back its hard not to respect the guy. I posted a bunch of trash talking that made me laugh but there is a lot more out there as well. I liked how he treated guys like Rodman, Drexler, Reggie Miller, and the Xman.

Hawkeye15
09-17-2014, 09:39 PM
haha, maybe my favorite player ever behind Jordan. The dude just had a giant pair of nuts and commanded respect.

SLY WILLIAMS
09-17-2014, 09:49 PM
haha, maybe my favorite player ever behind Jordan. The dude just had a giant pair of nuts and commanded respect.

One of my favorites was with Chuck Person. They used to trash talk each other a lot. I may not get this story exact but I will try. Before a game on Xmas eve Bird tells Person to remind him to give him his Xmas gift. So they go back and forth during the game. Then late in the game Bird gets the ball deep in the corner. He shoots a 3pointer. While the ball is still in the air he turns to Chuck and says Merry fing Xmas. Then the shot drops in.

You mentioned Jordan. Jordan was a pretty tough trash talker as well but even MJ said he got devoured when he tried to talk trash with Bird.

Bartlee23
09-17-2014, 10:13 PM
One of my favorites was with Chuck Person. They used to trash talk each other a lot. I may not get this story exact but I will try. Before a game on Xmas eve Bird tells Person to remind him to give him his Xmas gift. So they go back and forth during the game. Then late in the game Bird gets the ball deep in the corner. He shoots a 3pointer. While the ball is still in the air he turns to Chuck and says Merry fing Xmas. Then the shot drops in.

You mentioned Jordan. Jordan was a pretty tough trash talker as well but even MJ said he got devoured when he tried to talk trash with Bird.

Nice to see some people on here that were actually old enough to see Bird and these things. I remember most of them and love Chuck Person as well. Most people on this site have not seen any of this live and don't have true knowledge to how great the NBA use to be and how great some of these teams, players and rivalries truly were. I miss those times.

D-Leethal
09-17-2014, 10:28 PM
Trash talking has all but been eliminated from NBA basketball. It's sad, because it truly is ingrained in the sport. That **** is an art. Too many buttbuddies nowadays.

lol, please
09-17-2014, 10:30 PM
How could you hate one of the greatest players in the history of the game and a Celtics legend? :confused:

Hawkeye15
09-17-2014, 10:32 PM
Trash talking has all but been eliminated from NBA basketball. It's sad, because it truly is ingrained in the sport. That **** is an art. Too many buttbuddies nowadays.

the sport? You mean in general in this country. Toughness is dying, period. As is loyalty. People act like sports is the only profession where it happens haha.

SLY WILLIAMS
09-17-2014, 10:34 PM
How could you hate one of the greatest players in the history of the game and a Celtics legend? :confused:

I do not hate him now. Now I respect him but during that time I bet there were millions of Knicks, 76er, Piston, and Laker fans that hated him.

tmacsc2
09-17-2014, 10:52 PM
Larry legend!!!!

JasonJohnHorn
09-17-2014, 11:08 PM
In his prime, he was the best scorer I've ever seen and given that I grew up watching Jordan and have gotten to watch Durant the past two years, that says a lot.

And the fact he could score 28 points a game with only 20 shots a game and also hand out 7.6 assists is CRAZY awesome.

We will never see that again.

jaydubb
09-17-2014, 11:23 PM
I think so many on PSD underrate larry bird..

I'm a big laker fan that absolutely HATES the celtics.. ;)

That being said, I've always had nothing but respect for Larry Bird.. The guy just makes it happen.. I still think he's the best SF ever to play the game.. Yes even over him..

ThuglifeJ
09-17-2014, 11:29 PM
Its sad there is no witty trash talk like this anymore..

Or any at all.


When I played ball, whether team or pick up at gyms, there used to be constant talk like this...whenever I have time to go now days the younger kids will think you're a crazy person if u talk or take it personally.

Actually a great example, during my last few games on a team, there was this hot shot dribbler (in a very pretentious way, he was good though), who kept doing fancy crossovers at the top of the key. I kept yelling to my teammates "Strip him! He can't dribble!". The very first time i said it he looked at me in the most flustered/psycho/defensive way. he got so frustrated he couldn't even play his game cuz it went right to his head. He thought I actually meant it and was weak enough to say to all his teammates "OMG this dude thinks I can't dribble lol WHAT??". He had a horrible game because of it.

He was a few years younger and part of this newer generation who is insanely soft it felt like.


This also happens when you do hard box outs or rebounds at the gym..ppl will leave the game.

I'm only 6'2 190

ThuglifeJ
09-17-2014, 11:31 PM
I think so many on PSD underrate larry bird..

I'm a big laker fan that absolutely HATES the celtics.. ;)

That being said, I've always had nothing but respect for Larry Bird.. The guy just makes it happen.. I still think he's the best SF ever to play the game.. Yes even over him..

He's underrated here for sure. Probably due to lack of video/coverage/MJ getting insane hype even years after his retirement to the level most ppl only get when they're dead...so ya he got overshadowed a bit


I can't see how he's not a lock for top 5 player of all time or 6th...he's the greatest competitor ever

IKnowHoops
09-18-2014, 02:19 AM
Yeah, Bird is the best trash talker in NBA history, or at least in the 30 years I have been watching. I am more impressed with his trash talking skills than I am with his ability to back it up. For instance, a story I heard from Vinny Johnson went like this.

"So I'm a rookie, and I went in to guard Larry, and Larry starts in on me how I can't guard him. So he dribbles the ball up, and Im all over him. He pulls up from about 6 feet behind the ark and air balls it. Then he gets in my face and says "see that rookie, I can do that...I can do that all I want and coach won't say ---t. Can you do that?" So I come down with the ball and I shoot a three and it hits off the front of the rim. Next dead ball the coach pulls me out while Larry is laughing at me."

Bird had the skills with his delivery like a good comedian. And yes he is underrated by me included.

KobeOwnSU
09-18-2014, 02:23 AM
I hated him too. until i realized my dick was bigger than his, now i just know that his mustache was compensation.

IKnowHoops
09-18-2014, 02:31 AM
I hated him too. until i realized my dick was bigger than his, now i just know that his mustache was compensation.

nice

PurpleLynch
09-18-2014, 06:03 AM
Larry was the King of trash-talkers. A lost art nowadays. Sheed was the last great example.

DitchDat
09-18-2014, 06:57 AM
One of my favorites was with Chuck Person. They used to trash talk each other a lot. I may not get this story exact but I will try. Before a game on Xmas eve Bird tells Person to remind him to give him his Xmas gift. So they go back and forth during the game. Then late in the game Bird gets the ball deep in the corner. He shoots a 3pointer. While the ball is still in the air he turns to Chuck and says Merry fing Xmas. Then the shot drops in.

You mentioned Jordan. Jordan was a pretty tough trash talker as well but even MJ said he got devoured when he tried to talk trash with Bird.

One of my favorite stories also. Bird was a bad dude.

ManningToTyree
09-18-2014, 08:48 AM
Thanks for posting Sly. Bird is horribly underrated on this site.

SLY WILLIAMS
09-18-2014, 10:06 AM
Thanks for posting Sly. Bird is horribly underrated on this site.

Bird is way under rated on PSD but I can totally understand that. Bird came in to the league in 1979. Many PSD posters were not alive at that time. If anyone would have told me that I would make a positive Bird thread 30 years ago I would laughed hard. His clutchness got so annoying as a Knicks fan.

PurpleLynch
09-18-2014, 01:59 PM
Thanks for posting Sly. Bird is horribly underrated on this site.

Absolutely agree. Most of his stats are mindblowing. And he was cold as ice in the playoffs. Definitely an everlasting legend.

Chronz
09-18-2014, 02:05 PM
I wonder how confident Bird was as a rookie/younger days

Hawkeye15
09-18-2014, 02:07 PM
I wonder how confident Bird was as a rookie/younger days

he came into the league 2 months before he turned 24 haha. Today that is a 4 year vet...

He seemed to always have a brashness about him though.

tredigs
09-19-2014, 12:00 PM
he came into the league 2 months before he turned 24 haha. Today that is a 4 year vet...

He seemed to always have a brashness about him though.

That's crazy huh. We're talking about 6 seasons in to the careers of guys like Kobe/Bron/KD. All of them were essentially lock HOFers by the point Bird was getting into the league.

SLY WILLIAMS
09-19-2014, 12:34 PM
I'm not sure there was a 6 year age difference. That may be small exaggeration but there could have been a 4-5 year age difference over guys that skipped college. I thought Larry actually turned 23 when he was already playing as a rookie so that would make him 22 when he started in the NBA but somebody can double check that.

Most guys spent 4 years in college so they joined the NBA around the age of 21-22 in those days. Larry took 1 year off in part because he did not like the adjustment to Indiana university and he also felt the need to help his family financially. I think Larry may have been held out of playing 1 year because of the college transfer as well so he may have only played 3 years of college ball despite being a senior.

tredigs
09-19-2014, 12:56 PM
I'm not sure there was a 6 year age difference. That may be small exaggeration but there could have been a 4-5 year age difference over guys that skipped college. I thought Larry actually turned 23 when he was already playing as a rookie so that would make him 22 when he started in the NBA but somebody can double check that.

Most guys spent 4 years in college so they joined the NBA around the age of 21-22 in those days. Larry took 1 year off in part because he did not like the adjustment to Indiana university and he also felt the need to help his family financially. I think Larry may have been held out of playing 1 year because of the college transfer as well so he may have only played 3 years of college ball despite being a senior.

He was turning 24 when he came into the league. I'm pretty sure he worked and went to community college before he went to Indiana State.

By the time Bird was a rookie in the NBA, Kobe had already played 6 seasons, made 3x Larry's career salary and was working on his 3rd title. Lebron had been top 10 in MVP voting 5 times, and Durant already notched 3 scoring titles. Crazy but true.

Hawkeye15
09-19-2014, 12:56 PM
I'm not sure there was a 6 year age difference. That may be small exaggeration but there could have been a 4-5 year age difference over guys that skipped college. I thought Larry actually turned 23 when he was already playing as a rookie so that would make him 22 when he started in the NBA but somebody can double check that.

Most guys spent 4 years in college so they joined the NBA around the age of 21-22 in those days. Larry took 1 year off in part because he did not like the adjustment to Indiana university and he also felt the need to help his family financially. I think Larry may have been held out of playing 1 year because of the college transfer as well so he may have only played 3 years of college ball despite being a senior.

Bird turned 24 2 months into his rookie season. But, remember, he left campus at Indiana, and was working for the City of French Lick and going to community college when Bill Hodges convinced him to come play for ISU. He only played 3 years in college, but he was 20 his first year at ISU.

So, you figure guys are now 19 (one and dones), or 20 when they come into the NBA (21 is considered on the elder side, yeah, I know...). So compared to most incoming rookies the last decade, Bird was a straight up man in development stages. LeBron had played 350 NBA games by the time he was Bird's age coming into the NBA.

But yeah, I think Bird had that cockiness and confidence day 1 on an NBA floor, to answer Chronz's question.

SLY WILLIAMS
09-19-2014, 01:59 PM
He was turning 24 when he came into the league. I'm pretty sure he worked and went to community college before he went to Indiana State.

By the time Bird was a rookie in the NBA, Kobe had already played 6 seasons, made 3x Larry's career salary and was working on his 3rd title. Lebron had been top 10 in MVP voting 5 times, and Durant already notched 3 scoring titles. Crazy but true.

The year he worked and went to community college was the same year he dropped out of Indiana university as far as I can remember.

Larry Bird was born December 1956

Birds rookie year was 1979-1980

In November 1979 wouldn't that would make him 22 and turning 23 in December 1979?

I think he turned 24 in December 1980 That would be his 2nd season

In Birds day it was very rare to skip college and go straight to the NBA. Only a few players did so and they were usually not successful.

Hawkeye15
09-19-2014, 02:34 PM
The year he worked and went to community college was the same year he dropped out of Indiana university as far as I can remember.

Larry Bird was born December 1956

Birds rookie year was 1979-1980

In November 1979 wouldn't that would make him 22 and turning 23 in December 1979?

I think he turned 24 in December 1980 That would be his 2nd season

In Birds day it was very rare to skip college and go straight to the NBA. Only a few players did so and they were usually not successful.

all of this aside, the original point came up because Chronz asked if Bird had that mentality as a rookie. Well, he was old for a rookie even then, and quite frankly, anyone who gets in bar fights and acts like Bird did, probably never had an issue trash talking and exuding confidence, no matter his age/year in the league.

Bird is an unfortunate case. The REASON I don't have him as high as many, is because his limited time in the league. While his peak was absolutely that of a top 5 player ever, there are other factors, and his longevity absolutely hurts him badly. Which is why he falls into my tier 4 in my top 10.

SLY WILLIAMS
09-19-2014, 02:43 PM
all of this aside, the original point came up because Chronz asked if Bird had that mentality as a rookie. Well, he was old for a rookie even then, and quite frankly, anyone who gets in bar fights and acts like Bird did, probably never had an issue trash talking and exuding confidence, no matter his age/year in the league.

Bird is an unfortunate case. The REASON I don't have him as high as many, is because his limited time in the league. While his peak was absolutely that of a top 5 player ever, there are other factors, and his longevity absolutely hurts him badly. Which is why he falls into my tier 4 in my top 10.


LOL I just wanted to get the math straight. No matter how many times I subtracted 1956 from 1979 I never came out with 24 :)

I agree with you about Bird. He was cocky and funny right from the start. When he left his garbage truck buddies he told them he would be back to be their boss. He signed the largest contract ever as a rookie despite being drafted #6 (darn my Knicks could have had him at #4). He told everyone no matter how good he was he will always be the Hick from French Lick. This was all before he played a NBA game.

72 Wins
09-19-2014, 02:44 PM
The fkn GOLDEN ERA. Miss this shiiiiiiiit

Hawkeye15
09-19-2014, 02:55 PM
LOL I just wanted to get the math straight. No matter how many times I subtracted 1956 from 1979 I never came out with 24 :)

I agree with you about Bird. He was cocky and funny right from the start. When he left his garbage truck buddies he told them he would be back to be their boss. He signed the largest contract ever as a rookie despite being drafted #6 (darn my Knicks could have had him at #4). He told everyone no matter how good he was he will always be the Hick from French Lick. This was all before he played a NBA game.

I read his autobiography years ago. He was always that cocky dude. Always haha

He was just tough as it gets. Ever heard him talk about his dad? Or some of the rough things he has experienced? He just shrugs them off like it's nothing. And you can tell nothing really did bother him. Just a focused mofo who made zero excuses.

SLY WILLIAMS
09-19-2014, 03:03 PM
I read his autobiography years ago. He was always that cocky dude. Always haha

He was just tough as it gets. Ever heard him talk about his dad? Or some of the rough things he has experienced? He just shrugs them off like it's nothing. And you can tell nothing really did bother him. Just a focused mofo who made zero excuses.

Growing up as poor as he did in that environment can make you or break you. It showed in his attitude. He loved working on a garbage truck. He did not look down on it. You are right about his toughness. That is why Isiah says if it was him (Isiah), Jordan, Magic, and Bird in a room Bird is the one that would come out. I did not hear Bird speak about his dad. I know that situation (dad's death) must have been very hard to overcome yet he overcame it and excelled.

NYKalltheway
09-19-2014, 04:41 PM
Bird is way under rated on PSD but I can totally understand that. Bird came in to the league in 1979. Many PSD posters were not alive at that time.


You're doing it wrong. Larry Bird retired in 1992. Many PSD posters were not alive at that time. Yes, time flies and there are kids born in 2000 that can talk :p

Hawkeye15
09-19-2014, 04:42 PM
You're doing it wrong. Larry Bird retired in 1992. Many PSD posters were not alive at that time. Yes, time flies and there are kids born in 2000 that can talk :p

I watched Bird's career from 84 on. Still barely in my top 10 for the reasons I listed above.

SLY WILLIAMS
09-19-2014, 05:28 PM
I watched Bird's career from 84 on. Still barely in my top 10 for the reasons I listed above.

I understand you have your reasons. I bet 2 other posters would agree with you and maybe even push Bird out of the top 10. If I was choosing a team tomorrow Bird would not go any lower than 3.

Hawkeye15
09-19-2014, 05:31 PM
I understand you have your reasons. I bet 2 other posters would agree with you and maybe even push Bird out of the top 10. If I was choosing a team tomorrow Bird would not go any lower than 3.

depends on what you are choosing though.

I do a tier system anyways. Bird can be argued anywhere from 7-10 all time in my system.He can go no higher, and no lower haha