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Magic Johnson shares who is the greatest player he ever played against

Magic shares his pick
Magic Johnson with Michael Jordan and Larry Bird

Magic Johnson with Michael Jordan and Larry Bird

Magic Johnson is by many regarded as the best point guard in NBA history, and he had the opportunity to face some of the best in his playing days. But who is the greatest player Magic had played against? The answer might or might not surprise you.

The two most important players in NBA history

The NBA in the 80s reached a new level when it came to the popularity and recognition of its players. It was all thanks to the sudden eruption of great super teams and numerous stars entering the NBA. Many would call it the golden era of NBA basketball, but everybody knew who the two sheriffs were. It was all about Magic and Larry.

The two most important figures of that era of basketball represented the faces of the league, bringing back the Lakers-Celtics rivalry into life again. Both were coming into the league in 1979, and the two superstars would win 8 titles and 6 MVPs between each other, all while forming a brotherhood between each other despite being fierce rivals.

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It all started in the 1979 Championship Game, in which Magic prevailed, and it continued for over a decade on the biggest stage in the NBA. Sometimes Bird won, and sometimes Magic won. But they still both got recognized as some of the best players in NBA history.

Magic had the chance to play with guys like Kareem and Worthy and against legends like Julius Erving, Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, and many more, but only one stands out as the greatest according to Magic, and it's his lifelong rival and friend, Larry Bird:

"We came in at the same time, we didn't care about how many points we scored, we just cared about winning. We both had a knack for making our teammates better and we loved the big moment and trying to excel. When the pressure was on, and I tell you Larry Bird is still the greatest I've ever played against. He was so super smart and his will win was off the charts. We kinda just grew up together. He ends up in Boston, who the Lakers hate and Boston hate the Lakers, and I end up in LA. It was on from there. It was great drama, great games, and it lived up to all the hype."

Magic Johnson, The Universe Galaxy NBA

Magic may be biased due to his connection with Larry, but it's hard not to believe him. Going up against Bird from his college days through his prime wasn't easy, and that's why Johnson regards him so high. But if you asked Larry the same question, he would probably give Magic the same respect.

Michael Jordan maybe was the expected answer due to his GOAT status, but he really came up to the top when Magic and Larry aged and fell off, so the rivalry between MJ and the OG's is just not on the same level.

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