Indiana State Athletics (DR) / NBA
If there is an art where Larry Bird perhaps excels even more than the basket, it is that of trash-talking. Yet shy in “real life”, Larry Legend became a real ruthless verbal brute on the pitch. The proof with a new incredible story…
When talking about trash-talking, it is almost impossible not to pronounce the name of Larry Bird. Considered one of the masters of the matter by a whole host of players including Reggie Miller and Gary Payton, the Celtics legend has given rise to countless cult stories with his acerbic sense of the punchline – of which you can find the 10 best by clicking here. And in a time away from social media, Larry Legend could go far, very far.
Larry Bird, an anecdote of limitless trash-talking
While we had heard everything about the projections of number 33 of the Celtics, it was Gilbert Arenas who recently revealed a story that is visibly transmitted from generation to generation on the NBA floors. The interviewer, DJ Vlad, couldn’t believe his eyes!
DJ Vlad: “I had Gary Payton on this show, and I asked him if he himself was the best trash-talker in history. He told me no, and told me it was Larry Bird”.
Arenas: “Oh yeah, I’ve heard that before. That’s why we call him Larry Legend. A funny thing, it’s something I stole from him. There’s a story going around that right before the game, when the players are shaking hands and all that, Larry was like, ‘Okay guys here we go, we’re going to treat them like little bitches!’ (he bursts out laughing).
When I heard this story, I said to myself that it was hilarious and that I absolutely had to tell that to my opponents too! That’s how you start a basketball game! »
Without hurting Gilbert Arenas, the famous phrase was probably more intimidating when uttered by Larry Bird, one of the greatest players in league history, capable of taking a game on his own when he wanted, even in the playoffs. While Agent Zero’s career is entirely honourable, he may not have had the status to allow such violence before he crossed swords with the opposing team. Whatever, he had fun!
Bird, on the other hand, sees his legendary stature as a violent trash-talker being further cemented with this story. More than ever, the native of French Lick appears as the absolute reference of all time in the matter. And even Gary Payton, Kevin Garnett and others can only lay down their arms…
Between his sparkling level of play and his verbal arrogance, playing against Larry Bird must have been a real ordeal for many players of the 1980s. It’s a safe bet that they still have nightmares about it, several decades later…