44 years since making debut, stunning Larry Bird stat reveals monumental impact on the Boston Celtics

  • 15.09.2023 22:16:01

Larry Bird made his debut for the Boston Celtics on October 12, 1979, against the Houston Rockets.

Bird helped the struggling Celtics make a quick turnaround after winning just 29 games a season before. His impact on the team was huge from the get-go, leading to the C's winning three NBA championships.

The NBA Realist on X, formerly known as Twitter, shared some incredible stats from Bird's rookie season. "The Hick from French Lick" was the biggest addition for the Celtics during the 1979-80 season. He helped Boston win a staggering 32 more games with the same core from the previous season.

It showed how much impact the then-rookie Bird had on winning even though most fans now overrate the three-time NBA MVP. He got arguably better as the years progressed and soon turned into an all-time great.

Larry Bird had one of the best rookie seasons in NBA history, averaging 21.3 points, 10.4 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.7 steals per game. He edged out rival Magic Johnson to win the 1980 NBA Rookie of the Year award.

The Boston Celtics went from having 29 wins in 1979 to a league-best 61 wins a year later. Boston made quick work of the Rockets in the second round of the playoffs after receiving a first-round bye for being a No. 1 seed. They swept the Rockets in four games.

However, the Celtics ran into a brick wall against the Philadelphia 76ers in the Eastern Conference finals. The Sixers dominated Bird and Co. by eliminating them in five games. To add insult to injury, the LA Lakers won the NBA Finals, and Johnson was named the NBA Finals MVP.

A look at Larry Bird's incredible NBA career

Larry Bird and the Celtics returned for the 1980-81 NBA season with a vengeance. He led his team to 61 teams and won the 1981 NBA championship over the Houston Rockets, who transferred to the Western Conference that season.

Bird would win two more championships in 1984 and 1986. He also won three straight MVP awards from 1984 to 1986. He retired after the 1991-92 NBA season due to an ailing back injury, but that did not prevent him from participating in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, where he won a gold medal.

"Larry Legend" was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1998 and as a member of the Dream Team in 2010.

Bird also had a successful career as head coach and executive, mainly for his hometown team Indiana Pacers. He now serves as a consultant for the franchise after stepping back from the team last year.

Source: sportskeeda

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