Magic johnson and larry bird relationship

Magic & Bird: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know |

magic johnson and larry bird relationship

The rivalry between basketball legends Earvin "Magic" Johnson and Larry Bird first garnered national attention during the NCAA National. Thirty years ago, when Magic Johnson and Larry Bird dominated which is what so much of the Bird-Magic relationship represented in Boston. Magic Johnson and Larry Bird in the NBA Finals .. points of their relationship, from the NCAA championship to Johnson's HIV.

The two NBA legends seemed forever connected through college and professional basketball, but their story paused for more than 25 years. Then a phone call two weeks ago sparked basketball imaginations and set off a wildfire of hopeful longing.

They were talking, perhaps competing, again. Was this Bird vs. By phone from Indiana last week, Bird laughed heartily at the suggestion. Bird planned to call Johnson after the NBA trade deadline, just to congratulate his old friend on becoming the Lakers' president of basketball operations. It's the same title Bird has held for most of 14 years with the Indiana Pacers.

Johnson beat Bird to it. The phone call lasted less than five minutes, consisted mostly of small talk and might have touched only briefly on the fate of Indiana star Paul George. I don't think it was. It's all fake news anyway. Somebody's gonna start it and [it] just was a snowball effect.

Bird, 60, called the year-old Johnson crazy for trying this at his age. There's just so much to learn about it. He had to learn how the salary cap worked with help from others in the Pacers front office. He learned the importance of planning three years in advance. And one of the game's greatest players had to learn about the helpless nature of being an executive. Despite preseason optimism, Bird's Pacers arecurrently the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference.

As a player he could fix in-game problems. Now he can only watch. His advice for Johnson is to understand that. We thought we had a decent team that we thought could compete for the fourth or fifth seed.

Magic And Bird: A Rivalry Gives Way To Friendship

We haven't played as well as I thought we would all year. That's the growing pains. That's the frustration about it. Bird isn't much for phone calls. Then Bird went to Boston where he won three championships, one of them over Johnson, and Johnson came to Los Angeles, where he won five championships, two of them over Bird.

Their friendship started to bloom over a Converse commercial shoot, borne of mutual respect and similar aims. As their playing careers ended they became friends, but their lives took them in different directions. Johnson delved into the business world and remained in Los Angeles. He received overtures from other teams, but said last month he wouldn't have come back to the NBA for any other organization.

He has a lot of acres in land and the lawn is really beautiful. So, I get all the way down to the basketball court where we're going to shoot the commercial, so I get out and I asked him, "Well, where's my trailer? First it was a car scene.

After the car scene, we had to do the on-the-court stuff. So, he said, "I want you to take Larry to the basket. Larry, we're acting now.

magic johnson and larry bird relationship

This is what really changed our relationship. He had so many acres that he had those four-wheelers — ATVs. He gets on one. I get on one.

Magic Johnson & Larry Bird: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

So, I'm trailing him up to his house because that's where lunch was going to be served. We walk in and his mother came over, "Oh, Earvin! I'm like, "Oh, wow. So, we sit down and then his mother is just going on. She knew my stats, she knew me.

So, she brought the lunch over. We're sitting there and talking. I'm asking him about the house and asking him about the lawn, and he shocked me. I almost fell off my chair! I said, "Yeah, man. Whoever cuts your lawn does a wonderful job. You're cutting — what — ten acres? This has got to be acres! It just broke the ice. Here, we went from Bird and Magic, the basketball players, to now Bird and Magic, the men.

He asked me questions about Lansing and my family. I'm asking him questions. It was hard to get us back to the commercial shoot. We were giggling and laughing like two little boys. That was really what changed our relationship — that lunch, his mom, him knowing me as "Earvin" and not as "Magic," and myself really knowing him as "Larry. Yeah, she was the one. It's something how mothers can see things, you know? Like, "these guys probably need me.

It reminded me of my own mother — how sweet, kind, how thoughtful, how my mom is a big basketball fan, she is a fan.

magic johnson and larry bird relationship

I'm sitting here, I swear it was my mother talking to us, and it was Larry's mom. This sounds like a great scene. It should be in the play. It's in the play. You've read the play, right? A draft of the play? Yeah, I can't tell you everything, but I can tell you that one scene is in there.

Magic And Bird: A Rivalry Gives Way To Friendship : NPR

I'm curious to know what your relationship to the theatre has been. Do you go to Broadway? Do you see shows? Yeah, I see shows myself. My wife and I see shows — not just there in New York, but when they come here as well. I'm just blown away. Matter of fact, I was there opening night.

I'm always going there. There's nothing like New York.

MAGIC AND BIRD - Magic Johnson gets emotional recalling Larry Bird's concern when he contracts HIV

There's nothing like Broadway. There's nothing like a great play. I'm still blown away. I still can't believe that this is actually going to happen and that Larry and I actually have a play!

This just blows me away because I've been there so many times and never thought that I — we — would be a part of any play. What else have you seen on Broadway?

Hey, you know if you're married, you already know what's happening: Usually in a couple, the lady chooses the play!

magic johnson and larry bird relationship

A lot of times we'll go just because our friends are involved. Sam and LaTanya Jackson — they recommend a lot of plays.