The Rival Rumble: Magic Johnson vs Larry Bird

Bird and Magic

        What is the greatest rivalry of all time? Some believe that Bill Russell vs. Wilt Chamberlain was the toughest on court rivals, because Bill Russell controlled the NBA for three NBA seasons, then came Wilt Chamberlain. The two best players on the floor clashing, head to head all 94 feet. Many rivals are candidates but I have broke it down to two rivals, who have met one another in the finals three deadly times. According to Bob Ryan, “Bird and Magic. Unlike Russell and Chamberlain, their competition began in college. Michigan State’s triumph over Bird’s 33-0 Indiana State team in 1979 remains the highest-rated NCAA Championship Game of all time.”

        Larry bird was born in West Baden Springs Indiana, on December 7 1956. He went to the college of Indiana State University. Larry bird played all 13 seasons with the Celtics; within this 13 year span he managed to win three NBA champion, he also obtained Three NBA MVP awards having his No. 33 retired by Celtics. On the NBA’s 50th anniversary Larry was name NBA All-Star MVP and a proud member of the 1992 Dream Team while being a Nine-time All-NBA First Team. The Celtics drafted Larry 6th overall in 1978.

        Earvin Johnson Jr was born in Lansing Michigan, on August 14 1959. Earvin went to Everett High School, where he later earned his famous nickname”Magic,” after a journalist saw him score 36 points, 16 rebounds, and 16 assists in one game. Magic soon went to college, attending Michigan State University. In his sophomore year, He lead Michigan State to win a national college basketball championship. They defeated Indiana State University, with the roster containing Boston Celtics future star Larry Bird. Magic was chosen Most Valuable Player scoring 24 points.

Josh Mapes said, “The rivalry between basketball legends Earvin “Magic” Johnson and Larry Bird first garnered national attention during the 1979 NCAA National Championship.” When the rivals moved to the NBA it seemed that it was destined, both players rose to the top of their teams becoming stars. The rivals began to clash on and off the court, Flashy Magic vs Country Bird, Magic shoe vs Bird shoe, and endorsements. Larry and Magic have clashed 3 times in the NBA Championship, Larry only able to take home one ring of the three. Some people say these were the greatest games to watch.

        Magic played 905 NBA games. He accumulated 17,707 points, 6,559 rebounds, and 10,141 assists, making his career averages of 19.5 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 11.2 assists per game, the highest assists per game average in NBA history. Bird played 897 NBA games. He tallied 21,791 points, 8,974 rebounds, and 5,695 assists, translating to career averages of 24.3 points, 10 rebounds, and 6.3 assists per game. Who is the best of the two?

Sources:

(http://www.notablebiographies.com)

(http://bleacherreport.com)

(http://www.nba.com)

(http://www.biography.com)

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