Larry Bird – A Man of Great Moments
A few decades ago, before “GOAT” or Greatest-Of-All-Time even became a catchphrase, everyone already knew what it was like to witness an incredibly exceptional player. Many Boston Celtics fans will always treasure the legendary Larry Bird. Stephen Stapinski of Andover shares some great moments in the career of this ultimate athlete.
The one where he dropped 60
Way back on Mar. 3, 1985, Kevin McHale, who was another Celtic legend, was making quite a name for himself outside of more popular teammate Larry Bird and actually eclipsed Bird’s single-game scoring record by going for 56 points. Asked what he thought of McHale’s fresh feat, Bird said that “he should have got 60.” Stephen Stapinski of Andover recounts that nine days later, Larry Bird went on to score 60 points against the Atlanta Hawks, getting his record back in true fashion.
The one where he pointed to the heavens
Before the Steph Currys and Damien Lillards, Larry Bird firmly ended the debate as to who the best pure shooter on the planet was at the time. Him dominating beyond the arc was not really that big of a news. Easily he capped the 1986 and 1987 All-Star 3-point shootouts. One of his greatest moments came at the 1988 edition of the event. Tied with Dale Ellis at 15 points, with the money ball in his hands, Bird took his last shot, and the moment the ball left his palm, he pointed upward, claiming victory. Of course, the shot went in, and he did a masterful 3-peat. Stephen Stapinski of Andover adds that this remains as the highest number of successive years that the trophy remained with one person, in a tie with Craig Hodges of Chicago.
The one when he decided to play left
Some players have been known to be really versatile on the basketball court, but Larry Bird took this a few notches higher. On Feb. 14, 1986, the Celtics had a match against the Portland Trail Blazers. It so happened that this match came two nights before a more highly anticipated match against Boston’s most bitter rivals, the Los Angeles Lakers. In the game against the Blazers, the right-handed Larry Bird used his left hand more whenever he took the shot. Stephen Stapinski Andover mentions that his reason was that he was “saving his right hand for the Lakers.” Against Portland, Bird scored 47 points, 14 rebounds, and 11 assists, with 10 of his field goals using his left hand.
Stephen Stapinski of Andover believes that Boston is the greatest sports town in the world, and the best teams in basketball, baseball, and American football hail from the City of Champions. For more updates from Stephen and his favorite teams, click here.