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“Goddamn Who’s Larry Bird”: When Nolan Richardson First Heard Of Future NBA Legend’s Heroics On The Radio

Ashish Priyadarshi

Larry Bird had one of the most incredible NBA careers in history, walking out as a Hall of Famer with several accolades to his name.

The 1980s were the perfect time to get into basketball. You had several stars and powerhouse teams in the league including Bird’s Celtics, Magic and Kareem’s Lakers, Dr. J’s 76ers, and countless other all headlined the NBA at the time.

However, that decade was dominated by two stars, Larry Bird and Magic Johnson who won eight NBA titles in those years, playing each other thrice in the process as well with Bird winning three championships for his career overall.

Also Read: “Michael Jordan is playing basketball again because he wanted a burger named after him”: When McDonalds used the Bulls legend’s ‘I’m Back’ as an incredible marketing tool

Nolan Richardson Recalls The First Time He Heard About The Legend Of Larry Bird

Before Larry Bird was torching the NBA, he was lighting it up in college. Bird attended Indiana State where he averaged a ridiculous 30.3 points, 13.3 rebounds, and 4.6 assists per game while shooting 53.3% from the field in his three years at university.

College basketball wasn’t as popular then as it is now, and so many people didn’t truly know how great Bird was in his early days. Nolan Richardson was one of those people.

Tuning in to an Indiana State vs. New Mexico State game, all Richardson could hear was ‘Bird.’ Not being able to watch the game, Richardson was trying to imagine what was going down, and all he could picture was some dude named ‘Bird’ all over the place doing everything.

In all honesty, Bird was doing everything that day. In the 1979 matchup between New Mexico State and Indiana State, the Sycamores would win 91-89, with Bird pouring in a whopping game high 37 points and 17 rebounds to secure the victory for his school.

Also Read: “LeBron James lived up to the hype, it’s one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen”: When Charles Barkley was in awe of the Lakers superstar for handling all the pressure

About the author

Ashish Priyadarshi

Ashish Priyadarshi


Ashish Priyadarshi is The SportsRush's content manager and editor. Ashish freelanced for 1 year in the NFL division before taking on an editorial role in the company. He then tacked on managing content while adding on a writing role in the NBA division. Ashish has been closely following the NFL and NBA since the 2012 season when the Patriots lost the Super Bowl and Derrick Rose was at the height of his powers. Since then, Ashish has focused on honing his knowledge for both leagues in, even writing crossover pieces. In his free time, Ashish is an avid basketball player, he loves to watch movies and TV shows, immersing himself in the cinematic world. Ashish studies computer science and data science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and would love to mesh his love for sports with his technical skills.

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