Anytime is a good time to watch highlights of the greatness that was Larry Bird playing for the Celtics.
But on Larry Legend's 63rd birthday? It's time to break out the best of No. 33...
The fight with Dr. J in 1984:
The 60-point game against the Hawks in '85:
The steal against Isiah Thomas and the Pistons in '87:
The "you are watching was greatness is all about" duel with Dominique Wilkins in '88:
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It is one of the signature plays of Larry Bird's Hall of Fame career. And it happened 32 years ago today.
May 26, 1987. Eastern Conference Finals Game 5. Series tied at 2. The Celtics trail the Pistons 107-106 with five seconds left after the C's lose the ball out of bounds after Dennis Rodman blocks Bird's shot on a drive to the basket.
Isiah Thomas only needs to inbound the ball successfully and the Celtics will have to foul for any chance to get the ball back.
Larry Legend had other plans.
As you watch the video of the play above, it's interesting to note not only Bird's awareness as he intercepts Thomas' pass intended for Bill Laimbeer, but fellow Hall of Famer Dennis Johnson immediately moving to the basket to await the pass from Bird for the game-winning layup after Bird makes the steal. Final score: Celtics 108, Pistons 106. Boston takes a 3-2 series lead on its way to a seven-game series victory.
Bird's stat line from Game 5: 36 points (no 3's!), 12 rebounds, nine assists and one big steal.
The banged-up Celtics would go on to lose to the Lakers in the NBA Finals in six games but no one would soon forget the theft that got them there.
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