By Larry Bird
From the instant those gamers took the court docket on opposing aspects, they engaged in a fierce actual and mental conflict. Their uncommonly aggressive dating got here to represent the main compelling contention within the NBA. those have been the basketball epics of the 1980s--Celtics vs Lakers, East vs West, actual vs finesse, old-fashioned vs Showtime, even white vs black. each one driven the opposite to greatness--together fowl and Johnson amassed eight NBA Championships, and six MVP awards and helped store the floundering NBA at its most crucial time. while it all started they have been sour opponents, yet alongside the way in which they grew to become lifelong neighbors. With intimate, fly-on-the-wall aspect, whilst the sport was once Ours transports readers to this electrical period of basketball and divulges for the 1st time the internal workings of 2 avid gamers useless set on besting each other. From the heady days of buying and selling championships to the darker days of harm and sickness, we come to appreciate Larry's obsessive devotion to successful and the way his demons drove him at the courtroom. We listen him speak with candor approximately taking part in via persistent discomfort and its actually exacting toll. In Magic we see a tender, invincible superstar fight with the edge of defeat, not only as a participant yet as a workforce chief. we're there the instant he learns he is shrunk HIV and listen to in his personal phrases how that devastating information impacted his relationships in basketball and past. yet constantly, in either situations, we see them be triumphant. A compelling, up-close-and-personal portrait of basketball's so much inimitable duo, while the sport was once Ours is a reevaluation of 3 many years in counterpoint. it's also a rollicking journey via specialist basketball's most sensible occasions.
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Extra resources for When the Game Was Ours
Mindful that basketball always raised his comfort level, Bird showed up each night at Assembly Hall with Wisman and another IU freshman, Wayne Radford, with hopes of getting into the games with the varsity players. The newcomers rarely did. The regulars played game after game without including them. Bird and Wisman (who would later become noteworthy as the player Knight pulled off the court by his jersey on national television during one of his famous tirades in 1976) finally switched venues to the outdoor courts on campus.
I don't know if I would have gone there," Bird said. "I liked it. They ended up taking Rick Robey instead of me. He was 6-foot-11, and they got who they wanted and went off and won a national championship. " With his choices narrowed to the two Indiana schools, Bird was swayed by the same no-nonsense talk Knight would deliver to Magic two years later: no shortcuts, no guarantees, and no special treatment. He was speaking the boy's language—as well as his mother's. Georgia Bird won out. Her son Larry chose IU.
Thus, the WIT was born. Einhorn enlisted the help of Brandeis athletic director Dick Rodis and Providence College basketball coach Dave Gavitt, prominent members of the Amateur Basketball Association of the United States (later renamed USA Basketball), to fill out the roster around the Kentucky players. "At that time, I really didn't even know who Magic and Larry were," Einhorn admitted. " Gavitt was painfully aware of the abilities of Michigan State's imposing point guard. Just weeks earlier, Magic and his Spartans had steamrolled Gavitt's Providence Friars in the opening round of the 1978 NCAA Mideast Regional in Indianapolis.
When the Game Was Ours by Larry Bird