WEEI>On Demand>>Larry Bird with Glenn Ordway: Reflecting on his years in Boston, and being honored at 'The Tradition' event

Larry Bird with Glenn Ordway: Reflecting on his years in Boston, and being honored at 'The Tradition' event

Jun 28, 2011|

Larry Legend joined the Big O on the day he will be honored at the Sports Musuem's 'The Tradition' at the TD Garden, and reminisced about his days in Boston, as well as what he's been up to since leaving. Larry doesn't give many interviews at all, so this is must-listen radio.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

He will be honored tonight as part of the tradition hall of Famer Celtic great and now the president of basketball operations. Of the Indiana Pacers the one and only Larry Bird. Party it's great to talk to you again. -- -- -- while I noticed you picked up a little bit in my weight is amp I design cholera. Fast -- but who aren't. -- are you cut our scream we used year old -- -- Used to bust my ball -- always. And -- look at -- and I keep telling you I should gravity eventually will take its course on yeah right now what's going to talk to you the once again is so much to talk about just so much as soon as. Has transpired here obviously there honoring you here in Boston. For everything that you did. For this downtown now known -- championship or title town to the rest of the to the rest of the country. And a lot of trips back you've come back on business with the pacers -- -- -- -- by designed to adjust the way the schedule worked out. Well you know we're we're pretty busy here and but I try to get to as much as I possibly can. Just never enough because my admiration I have for the city it's a great city as a sports Perelman. Always like to go back out here but. Just the opportunity -- -- as much like that although some I'm home. Be there for a couple days and party enjoy it. You're you're always a guy that I always felt. Live in the moment and that's probably why you were so great in the moment because you took that moment for what it was kind of -- talk and he over the years and interviews that we didn't. And keep on joking about doing what's it going to be like when you sit back and you'll rocking chair of fortune and look back at all the stuff I know you're not they're quite yet. But I wondered if you look back -- that the great period that you had. This team. With a something's -- is anything that you could look back -- during that period and say man I wish I'd done this. You know cup more championships -- -- Bill Clinton in 1981 more first championship on -- cart team around Kabul we got a chance here to win their release five championships and -- couple years there wouldn't do as well then. Started in 8485. And 86 maybe seven. Where were all our way of -- -- a lot of championships and also in the backs issues are common in in and things are changing so. I always felt that we good enough team to win five championships. We played him five. Finals but don't we just won three so let's try to most of the disappointing trying. But overall if you look at that I have there was the greatest time in my life. Doing so my loved. And a player in the city that -- care for their players and their team's. Soul really with a positive forming. And -- mr. -- spin out there -- missed planned. But you know -- them. Sort of forget I even played an eventual. Truth whether it's -- a great experience for me I grew up from bolstering the hand met a lot of good people and in -- to play for ridden. But management team is where we got a pretty good team after. To get the same juice from the game coaching. Or being an executive that you're displaying. Now. I still get nervous or -- true and not like if -- were played but it's not in the same. But you know you hit a ball on your hands your minds wanna earn. Thousand mile a minute and -- makes split. Reactions your make decisions you're gonna do you know a little bit verifying cautions a little bit like. But not to like plan. That was it nervous energy when you when you say you're you're nervous when you're playing there. -- more than -- like. Well and nervous were awful I mean college in the end. We go to shoot around video games and right wanna get back. From about 1 o'clock till game time I was just it was awful. But somewhat trust diplomat corps in the white -- all I -- way it was complex so it's the oldest neurosurgery and and to reward by house won't play because we know so much you play good and so much you don't but you always have to give the effort. Towards the whole ritual with touch in the bottom of the sneakers and -- was that part of that nervous energy or we will actually trying to accomplish something. Well that started high school we've played on the all a lot of floors that. Couldn't keep up as well it could just a little bit better and so it's always -- doesn't bother me issues and -- -- -- into habits and went through college and my whole career so. You symmetry warfare proved they're seeing. You know so much time as as transpire -- -- and upon. This is 32 years since she graduated from got a three out of for a Indian state -- its 32 years just. Amazing how much time goes black. Are you amazed to win. You dealing settings Daryn as great a player issue war is greater as legacy that you left the you're young people out -- who have no idea who you war. All I'm over him and John have which -- -- Back in early eighties and these civilian or as time goes on people can forgive me and her new generations and then he tried there's a lot of people out there hadn't had no clue -- played her. Or who I am so that's not all bad Glenn coming sometime this was good stuff more minds and do what you want do -- to -- level -- -- destruction are used to. Remember you haven't posse though some of these players like currently can. Eight or ten guys -- -- I don't ever remember that posse of yours. I don't know Peter King guys -- warning. -- You want to always wanted to ask you because people talk about. The great years and obviously 86 maybe the greatest team of all time to me that final year in the NBA for you when you look back yet. You averaged this guy who can tell you people had difficulty walking after -- I remember a big contraption is damn -- point -- mr. back to you remember mr. York. And you add them literally. Of like drop your body and to mr. Barak and stay in. One position for the entire flight and Andy get off the plane. And it was hard just walking on the -- shoot 35 years shall. Each last year and India and we didn't -- on what we knew that the times calls. You averaged 37 minutes he averaged twenty point two points per game nine point six rebounds and six point eight -- that he only played 45. Regular season games but. I asked him look at those numbers. Lot of guys in the in the peak of their career. That would love to have numbers like that how did you deal. I. -- -- you know I have that radiating pain gamble plagues and what what what territory many ground before I go up to play I get so -- stood up and it would limit lot of trying. It wouldn't completely go away. But I -- mask amount and not think about it but also a game was over on those in trouble -- have. And you know -- injections that year and and -- -- injection on the -- -- mom there's frustrating. And I really didn't do you think should play that last year but debut ever talk to him and we just trying to manage to get through in -- tell me tremendously. Some -- you get some relief from some visual and but just part of sports. -- -- a little we're just gonna do it's a shame mourning. Just some fortunate to have to go out that way and. I am amazing because I remember it that way did you have a phenomenal game. And would sit there and say is awesome Arlen of these diseases tax okay and and it would be over. And you would literally have trouble. A walking to get to the -- getting to the reply. -- -- -- to Arizona for fusion. Probably. Six months or so months after the Olympics. And I enjoy as I was there I was cobalt doctors that you couldn't do anymore damage it's probably is bad is gonna get so. So Q where we wanna play or not but just part of sports and just have to deal with fortunate to be aware of him as just unfortunate that my back just do that. That wouldn't get right it was never right. But what won a war. And Iraq complies hand. Most flustered frustrated frame Oakland was not been able practiced -- want to practice. I could tell much skill -- we're deteriorating. That was the most frustrating part. Now I was gonna ask you what does that do to a player you've been to the top of the mountain and then suddenly. You sit there in the jungle -- for snapper is guys that you were probably chirping that just here at school -- contrasted them. And there are just Whitman right by you. Gloria. At least -- -- from my house trying to hurt him. Yeah it was tough. I knew it if my back was fine actor to play because you know another year or so but. One when it started giving the pain the last couple years and -- -- -- was bound over then then the Olympics were common in and I don't want to play in the Olympics. So it was frustrating that -- -- looking back on I wouldn't know when true true. How -- rewarding was -- the Olympic experience Larry didn't considering the fact that. You would not the same play it was the dream team but you're not the same player you were few years before that. -- putting cry actually over there kind of shoot low before games about it. But of the feeling I got what I walked out -- for a first game and go on the floor and -- all the flags. You know that was the wondrous things you're have to play -- for your country and and -- I want Applera was a few years back and no not -- -- play about twenty minutes a game. But just the experience was overwhelming -- in just a great experience for -- They wanted to so many are former Celtics. Who have gone into coaching Rick Carlisle now owns. The Larry O'Brien trophy with his Dallas Mavericks that he coached obviously for you know why why there's so many of these guys and ended -- -- -- get back into it now. Down in Houston. I don't know I mean you look around the world -- source. You know five years -- or are -- for five years woman Donna Walsh was talking about same time and know Chris for most coaches and Philadelphia email car was. That it probably was a coach at one time and -- -- down the list for me in there. Com my teammates were involved and do from officer coaching. And I have no clue but you know if you really look at him watching us play the way we play the game and how we -- about our business. These -- sort hellish and coaches were in and some GM there I mean. We we will replace the smart game we tried to. Use the least amount -- -- switches and still win the games. But we fought to game out and maybe that has from the do with the. You ended up going back home to Indiana that's where you coached you obviously in the job that you have right now as president. You did have an opportunity did you not to stay here in Boston. Yeah I came. Kind of the year retardant -- -- or for surgery Dave Bowman coming up for. That you know this could learn a little bit more chairman. And I had a couple -- to stay out there but I could never seen -- coach in the Boston Garden. Special are played there because all my memories were described as one people as player. Even here in Indiana had told Donnie if the guard was still up I would never go winner of opposing coach and play against. The Celtics. Northern Indiana -- Coach and I just couldn't do that. But to the Olympic Torch down and I go in and in the other guarded -- -- They did not tear that building -- trust me it wasn't easy to see that appear in this city. You might not it -- would you -- take tonight off the ninth Carlyle yabloko trying to count. Are there a lot of it anyway. Not -- took his job might just couldn't do them. I couldn't see myself walking in the Boston Garden as the visitor this couldn't do it. When you say that. It's that you couldn't stay here in that in that building it was the memories in the building the new building obviously. Looks different -- different. And actually have air conditioning over the aviation surprised. Yeah -- pretty amazing when you think about it from all the modern amenities. All of these Arenas right place at -- air -- trial of the when rallies to ditch all the time. Has it at -- put the put heat on eight. -- -- and -- -- just there is no air conditioner. On it's amazing that you guys playing under those conditions when you look at the conditions. -- these athletes have today I mean you you are lining up. You know private jets for these guys in there they're obviously performing in in March different buildings to -- some of the buildings you played it. Yeah I mean it's if things change no if you go back and talk to Russell and Casey Jones -- say they rode trains buses and took can have some. So everything train just. I know one. Polished player and I use -- -- cruise in personal and guys and they felt we kind of made between did you know when used to used to review on them at 6 o'clock bus illegal airport and like probably two -- three hours to -- -- used to with a renewed job. And there's a lot easier now but you know ten or fifteen years from -- -- probably be some some their. I don't want. There are very proud to I was gonna say I'm gonna get any benefit is that. God I just don't I don't seem did you write us. Preferred the stories of the old Celtics are going and train and actually that was once spot I remember the all players -- ultimately actually had to jump off the train. The train was going straight through when they had only slowed it down to them and actually had to jump off imagine that -- -- -- you're contemplating giving. This position open a year from now. He's. You know I I was about stepping down last year and I decided what caught my -- -- And he -- it was an oil going up with the league and and and then a lot of things going on and and what's ordered got to -- a pretty good situation here and around. You know -- Spacek got a good core group of young players and so sometimes. If you like to win championships every year but still sometimes you're satisfied with the job you -- on the -- -- -- satisfied that. I think it was just franchises could shape and were able -- shooters who happens but. Turned 55 this December and what you trough collagen and me and -- -- and wounded some different and -- say that but maybe she wants to keep doing this I don't. I was gonna say -- -- what are what are you gonna do. Do you have any idea what you gonna do. I don't worry about it. I. The last customize I was from Fordham when -- and -- this summer but I don't know warm won't do it I don't worry about it you know honestly can still do a lot of military work to do lot of functions and then and different things but. -- get back in the maturity were -- and -- -- They're -- no plan. But -- do. How different is the job that you're doing right now in that. You do get criticized remember an awful lot of criticism of view whether or not I don't know a deal I mean he was great. People of the team in India in the town. And people of deal. You know you're one of those you know three or four icons in the in the in the history of sports in the city but in this job but pretty good year on the you made the playoffs. Mom you gave the bulls of Iran. Albeit a five game series but you're in every single one of those games you made a trade here on -- last week but you probably receive. A little more criticism than you do as -- -- correct. Well you know -- -- -- my share but in Oakland right what I took over one down left I'm jewelry that I knew had to rebuild whole -- And I laid out a plan to -- and should look. And I -- Sam -- I don't like get bored to win many games. And but in three years -- take -- evercore group the young guys about ten or eleven think. We can build this franchise well it's not going to be Kurdish and I don't like it and no power here will announce Kong's star went. You think of the game today. Compared to the game that you played in the -- There's not a lot of difference you know some athletes that Ron Wolf faster and jump we'll hire. An ever ran to a guy like. -- LeBron James. -- like Dwight Howard I mean there's some very very good players between two guys are. It is or play the game. Especially welcome -- and then came up to now. And Shaq and Colby. But this you know -- stilted and put. The guys -- -- -- hard discussion little bit higher. As far as stride guard amount I don't know done maps -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- I would love to compete against must new group my nose always -- talk who built play in this or -- -- to them like -- against I would like it's it's pretty much chances to get some of these guys. Seemed his predecessor you play against them you don't -- -- again you take them you'll help out let's say you're. It's -- -- help -- reduced through sort of. I -- want to hear your name would -- the Nowitzki course -- and I argue all the time next part of the show and I argue with them all the time because. He for some reason dot Dirk was a better player than you I think you're very different than -- and affect you ball flight. Down keys -- different. Player that you Xena. What makes him put two and you know most my stuff was almost got little marker stone post. You know it's hard experiment and it's it's the bar for me just being be brought up. With Erica I like gurkha like it was a person. I'm happy for him. And I'll put of people frank you'd -- may have -- had no prob never had a problem. But he's another guy electorate you know and so you know whatever. That's for people other people debate. I dislike him as a human I think is great for game he works hard he takes pride in is an impassioned and and his job. And I think it's always positive formally. Today some militia control and one of those time machines out there doing plan against any of these so. Condit they're building a statue. For you out there obviously we've got one back here to report read. He says sing about statues and they don't want shrimp it's just an alignment of -- sponsored pensions. And on you'd have one. In the city where. You made me as a professional athlete and obviously at home where you were great in the and college and where obviously you resign right now and workers -- that's quite an honor. It's a great article in which none on in all that stuff. I'm always three young man has been working for copiers and and trying to raise the money the right way just -- donations from people who care and follow my career. Matter Fredricka me with him very shortly here talk about it. But I'm so honored and you know it's disruption never think -- it just something happens and and people. But I look at my crew have been over and you move on. But there's lot of people aren't you still want talk about home. Well that's what really good tonight with the tradition and we'll talk more about it and obviously we'll throw more questions outages and a blast. Being able to talk small basketball which I really mission. And hopefully we'll have the opportunity due to gamble will do it tonight. That tradition Larry it's always great talking -- Thanks clintons are very happy for you done well. Thank you very much Larry Bird ladies and gentlemen you're an eviction.

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