If you assemble an all-time trash-talking team and Larry Bird isn/t front and center on it, then you have no idea what you are doing. No matter who you talk to from his era, everyone agrees The Legend was as cold as they come.
While the Celtics had their biggest rivals in the Lakers and Magic, their Eastern Conference battles with the Pistons were no less intense. The Bad Boy Pistons were a force to be reckoned with, and their physical play on defense was their signature trademark. Just what is needed to get Bird going.
On one occasion, Chuck Daly decided to give a young athletic forward the task for shadowing Bird. Dennis Rodman was considered to be one of the best up-and-coming defensive players out there, and Daly decided he was ready to take the Bird exam. Bird took this personally and after making four consecutive shots turned to coach Daly and said:
“Who’s guarding me, Chuck? Is anyone guarding me? You better get someone on me or I’m gonna go for 60.”
As if this wasn’t enough, while Rodman was up in his face trying to prevent him from getting the ball Bird would yell to his teammates to pass him the ball “before they notice nobody is guarding me.” Whatever Rodman tried to do, it didn’t work. That night he got an education from Bird University.