Larry Bird, who retired from the NBA in 1992, made an announcement at his retirement press conference that he would be attending only one game during his retirement. The game was Game 6 of the 1988 Eastern Conference Finals between Boston Celtics and Detroit Pistons. He attended the game with his family, but left after just two minutes into the first quarter.
Larry Bird, during his retirement announcement, issued a surprising choice for which 1 NBA game got him fired up most. Read more in detail here: how old was larry bird when he retired.
During his 13-year professional basketball career, Larry Bird was a part of several memorable games. He was a part of three championship Boston Celtics teams and three NBA Finals appearances, three of which were against the Los Angeles Lakers. Bird announced his retirement from the NBA on August 18, 1992, after back issues and other ailments had taken their toll.
He reminisced on his Hall of Fame career during his speech. He highlighted one game in particular that had “heated him up” more than any other. It wasn’t just any game versus the Lakers, to be sure.
Larry Bird said that he subjected his body to a “living hell.”
On Aug. 18, 1992, reporters swarmed Larry Bird as he announced his retirement at a news conference at the Boston Garden. | Getty Images/John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe
When Bird announced his retirement from the NBA, it was a sad day for the league. He’d just returned from the Olympics, where he’d won a gold medal with the Dream Team, but he knew it was time to call it a day. Injuries caught up to him, particularly his back issues that had plagued him for the previous two seasons.
At the Boston Garden, he announced his retirement. He said that he wanted to make it obvious that he was done.
“Enough is enough. According to United Press International, Bird remarked, “I’ve had enough to last me a lifetime.” “I will not be playing basketball, regardless of what you hear from now or next year.
“The hammering and agony forced me to make a choice. I gave the Celtics my heart, my body, and my soul. I’ve been putting my body through hell for the last 17 years.”
In the 1991-92 season, Bird missed 37 regular-season games. He had missed 22 games the year prior.
Larry Bird recounted the one game in his career in which he was really enthralled.
3rd time named champions, 2nd Finals MVP in 3 years
On this day in 1986, Larry Bird sealed his legend by leading the Celtics to their 16th championship. twitter.com/EXEPF4Vrlx
June 8, 2019 — Bleacher Report NBA (@BR NBA)
From 1984 through 1987, the Celtics reached four consecutive NBA Finals. Three of those encounters were with the Lakers’ archrivals. The other came in 1986, and it was against the Houston Rockets, whom Bird had beaten in the NBA Finals in 1981.
The series against the Rockets in 1986 was tight, particularly after Game 5. Things became nasty in the sixth game, which was held at The Summit in Houston. Ralph Sampson and Jerry Sichting of Houston got involved in a fight that enraged the audience. The Rockets were on the verge of being eliminated in that game, down 3-1 in the series, but the incident injected some excitement into the atmosphere, and Houston cruised to a 111-96 victory to force a Game 6 in Boston.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Bird stated after the game, “We lost our composure.” “We disintegrated and unwound. When they went up, it was one of those games when we just thought, ‘What the heck,’ and now we’ll have to come back the following game.”
That was the following game, and Bird was all set to go.
Bird said during his retirement announcement, “I can never remember being so worked up for a game.”
He demonstrated it. Bird took over as coach, and the Celtics dominated the game, winning 114-97. He had a triple-double, scoring 29 points, dishing out 12 assists, and grabbing 11 rebounds. Bird’s third and last title came in that year.
Bird was so important to Red Auerbach that he couldn’t speak enough about it.
Bird made his Celtics debut in 1979, playing in all 82 games. With 21.3 points and 10.4 rebounds per game, he averaged a double-double in his first season.
According to UPI, Celtics President Red Auerbach remarked during Bird’s announcement, “He looked like a little old country bumpkin thirteen years ago.” “You realized you weren’t talking to an idiot when you looked into his eyes. He understood what he wanted out of life and what it would take to get it.
“No one has ever been more driven by themselves. Nobody in my 42 years of life has ever played pain like this man. He did it because he enjoyed the game and the people.”
In 1998, Bird was named to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
RELATED: Red Auerbach’s temper flared when he challenged Hawks owner Moses Malone to a fight and punched him.
Larry Bird, during his retirement announcement, issued a surprising choice for which one NBA game got him fired up the most. Reference: how many rings does larry bird have.
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