Larry Bird’s crazy reaction after LeBron’s 1st game: « I hate… »


Author of one of the most legendary careers in history, Larry Bird knows a lot about excellence. Witnessing the long-awaited debut of LeBron James in the NBA in 2003, he then split a speech that shocked more than one.

Like any 1st pick, his first steps on the floors of the league were meant to be surrounded by immense expectation. However, as the most hyped prospect in history, LeBron James had to deal with extra weight on his shoulders on this occasion. Traveling to Sacramento for his NBA debut, the great hope of the Cavaliers signed a memorable performance there despite the pressure:

Larry Bird’s hot take on « Young LeBron »

Author of 25 points, 6 rebounds, 9 assists and 4 steals against the Kings, LeBron could not have dreamed of a better start in his pro career. And yet, some observers continued to doubt him after this first demonstration of talent. A skeptical fringe of which, however, was clearly not part Larry Birdwho on the contrary showed himself dithyrambic towards him in the NY Times :

He’s going to be one of the best players in the league once the season is over. Other players and veterans can say what they want and say he’s not ready, but this kid is a real gem.

As you will have understood, Larry Legend did not show the slightest measure when speaking on the Chosen One. To the point of already promising him a place in the pantheon of basketball at the time:

I have never seen anything like it. His passing quality is among the best I’ve seen, and given his speed, size and strength…I hate to put labels on a player, but if we’re not talking about him as a future Hall of Famer five years from now, something is wrong. He’s the best talent I’ve seen emerge in years.

A true basketball expert, Bird was right on this one. Indeed, LBJ only confirmed all the good that his eldest then thought of him afterwards. First by being crowned Rookie of the Year at the end of the 2003-04 season, then by amassing a plethora of awards and titles in order to become one of the very best players in history. Like what, having a nose is not given to everyone!

When some refused to get excited about LeBron James after his first game in the league, Larry Bird immediately climbed into the wagon. The Celtics icon probably did not regret it afterwards given the King’s career!


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