Born: December 7, 1956 West Baden, Indiana American basketball player and coach

few players have left a note on 1980s skilled basketball prefer Larry Bird, the famed forward for the Boston Celtics.

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Larry Bird to be born on December 7, 1956. He to be the 4th of Joe and Georgia Bird's 6 children. His birthplace, West Baden, Indiana, is a tiny village just exterior the slightly larger town the French Lick, Indiana, i beg your pardon a had actually a populace of two thousand. French Lick was once a famous resort ar that people visited for its mineral springs (healthful waters). French Lick had fallen upon tough times by the moment Bird was a youngster. His father controlled to uncover factory work in the town, but the Bird family constantly struggled to make ends meet. The birds had sufficient coal to remain warm, but many nights the old heating system would break down. The residence would fill with black smoke, and the family members would all need to stand outside, freezing, when Joe Bird tried to resolve things.

Bird and his brothers played all sorts the sports, including baseball and also softball. In fact, Bird did not work out on basketball together his main sport till he remained in high school. When he establish he could excel in the sport, he started to exercise day and night. "I played when I to be cold and also my body to be aching and I to be so tired," the told sports Illustrated. "I don't understand why, I just kept playing and playing.… ns guess I always wanted to make the most out that it."

Bird sharpened his talent in among the most demanding basketball arenas. In Indiana, the sports reigns supreme. As soon as he remained in high institution in French Lick, he played guard throughout his sophomore and also junior years. He proved no good ability in ~ the time, and at 6 feet 3 customs (1.9 meters) he to be not especially tall. By his senior year, however, Bird had actually grown four more inches. At 6 feet 7 inches (2 meters) he came to be an exceptional physical specimen and retained his agility (ability to relocate quickly) and also hustle (speed, drive). Countless universities want him for your teams, but Bird chose to continue to be at home. He gone into Indiana university in the autumn of 1974. Bird lasted just twenty-four days at the college. The felt uncomfortable about the size and the impersonality (lack the emotion) of the school. He went back to French Lick and also entered junior college there, but within 2 months he had actually dropped out of the college as well.

Bird had a short marriage that ended in divorce. In order to assistance himself and his daughter from the marriage, Bird take it a job with the City room of French Lick. The drove a rubbish truck and also helped to keep parks and also roads in the district. Such work-related may have seemed a low allude to part people, however Bird called Sports portrayed that he actually took pleasure in it. "I loved that job," he said. "It was outdoors, friend were approximately your friends.… i felt like I was yes, really accomplishing something. Had the chance to do my ar look better."

Overcomes tragedies

Bird faced an individual loss during the same period when his father committed suicide. After that tragic event, Bird determined to go back to college. This time he went to Indiana State. The had tiny confidence in his scholastic abilities, yet felt that he could assist the basketball team, the Sycamores. Already he had actually grown an additional two inches. He was 6 feet 9 inch (2.1 meters) in height and also weighed 220 pounds (99.9 kilograms).

Bird had actually to sit out his very first season in ~ Indiana State due to the fact that of rules having to do with players moving from one school to another. The year the Sycamores walk 13–12 (won thirteen games and lost twelve). When he was enabled to play in the 1976–77 season, his an initial year top top the team, the same Sycamores deserve a 25–3 record—their ideal in practically thirty years. When he to be at Indiana State, Bird ended up being the most talked about college player in the country. Bird always played with and for the team and always shared his fame with his fellow players both on and also off the court.

The Boston Celtics drafted Bird in 1978. He had the option of playing skilled basketball ideal away, however he decided to remain in school and finish his degree. The Celtics resolved a deal for Bird ~ his graduation. The contract signed top top June 8, 1979, provided Bird $650,000 per year for 5 years, a full of $3.25 million. This amount was a record for a rookie (first-year player) in any sport. The Boston pan made no secret of their expectations because that their brand-new headliner. Bird did not disappoint them.

Bird took the national Basketball association (NBA) by storm together a rookie in 1979, conquering the league practically without a


Larry Bird. Reproduced through permission the the

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rest throughout his career. He aided the Celtics restore their position as a basketball superpower. The made the NBA All-Star team his first year, played in every continual season Celtics game, and also led the team come a first place finish in the league. Bird was named Rookie that the Year and finished third in the Most beneficial Player polls.

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Bird soars with Celtics

Those who had actually predicted the Bird can never revolve Boston around had to take earlier their statements. ~ Bird's very first year, the team play in the championship series again and won in 1981, 1984, and also 1986. The Celtics' games at the Boston Garden (their residence stadium) were marketed out because that years since fans wanted to watch Bird play.

Bird was never the flashiest of football player in the NBA. He was not an extremely fast ~ above the court and also was not a exceptional jumper. Bird has completed greatness the old-fashioned way—by gift consistent, through contributing not as a grandstanding superstar but as a team player, and also by attacking every game with every oz of effort. He spent hours practicing both through his team and alone. Sportswriters and fans alike have been amazed at just how Bird knew the game, the basketball court, and also where the ball was going to be. His timing and also feel because that the game was exceptional. He always seemed to recognize where he should go and where he need to be.

Bird was always somewhat injury-prone. The missed much of the 1988–89 season after significant surgery top top both heels. He ongoing to battle ago problems and other injuries transparent the next couple of seasons. He retirement from the Celtics ~ a thirteen-year career. He play his last video game of basketball together a member that the U.S. Olympic Dream Team (a basketball team made up of U.S. Superstars) at the 1992 Summer Olympic games in Barcelona, Spain.

after ~ retiring together a player, Bird worked for the Celtics as a consultant. In 1997, Bird returned to his home state that Indiana and became the coach the the Indiana Pacers. That led his team come the eastern Conference finals in 1998 and also 1999; in 2000, the Pacers lost to the Los Angeles Lakers in the finals before Bird stepped under as coach.

For an ext Information

Bird, Larry, and Jackie MacMullan. Bird Watching. brand-new York: Warner, 1999.