Bird Watching: On Playing and Coaching the Game I Love

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9780446524643: Bird Watching: On Playing and Coaching the Game I Love

Larry Bird captured the imagination and admiration of basketball fans throughout his thirteen-year career with the Boston Celtics with his trademark style of creative, intelligent, exciting, and hard-nosed play. And then, last year in his rookie season as head coach of the Indiana Pacers, he infused the team with these same qualities -- and the results were remarkable. He turned around a slumping franchise and led the Pacers to the conference finals. To finish off a great season, Bird was named the NBA's "Coach of the Year" -- quite an accolade for Bird, who had never coached before and surprised many fans with his unusual and unorthodox coaching methods.

This book is a look into one of the greatest minds to have ever stepped on a hardwood court. Larry Bird shares his inner thoughts on basketball that to date only his Celtic teammates and Pacers players have been privy. From dissecting offensive and defensive strategies to assessing the talent of NBA players; from sharing the genesis of his coaching philosophies to how he deals with today's overpriced and temperamental players, it's all there. This book is Larry Bird's basketball playbook, and it's the one book every basketball fan will want to read.

Cover design by Tom Tafuri
Cover photograph by Glenn James/NBA Photos

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Review:

The first sentence of Larry Bird's candid post-player memoir begins blandly enough: "On August 18, 1992, I announced my retirement from the Boston Celtics." It's the one that follows--"It was one of the happiest days of my life"--that sets the tone for the book. Most stars have to be pulled off center stage, but as Bird Watching makes clear, the former Celtic legend who returned home to eventually coach the Indiana Pacers is certainly a rare bird. He's not afraid to ruffle feathers. And he's not afraid to tell his truth.

Perhaps the most striking revelations concern his heart. On top of the back pain that plagued him through much of his career, from time to time Bird experienced the feeling--and disorienting flush--of an irregular heartbeat, which he kept hidden from the Celtics. Even now, in the stress-filled world of coaching, Bird has almost passed out on the bench a couple of times--but he remains a fierce competitor. "I'm not going to be stupid about this heart condition, but I'm not going to live my whole life in fear of this thing either. If it goes, it goes."

Bird Watchingspends virtually no time with Bird the player; he's not one for looking back. He's more interested in explaining his evolution and thinking as a coach, examining the current state of the NBA, and picking apart the Pacer's disastrous 1999 playoff loss to the Knicks. He does, however, reminisce about his amazing connection to Magic Johnson, comparing it to the bond between Ali and Frazier. "I knew it was going to be like that forever after I played him in college for the national championship," Bird writes. "I never came up against anyone, other than Magic, who could challenge me mentally. Magic always took me to the limit." From Bird, it's hard to imagine a more heartfelt compliment. --Jeff Silverman

About the Author:

JACKIE MACMULLAN is a senior writer for Sports Illustrated covering the NBA. She is also a regular contributor to CNN/SI, the 24-hour sports news network.

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Bird, Larry, MacMullan, Jackie
Editorial: Grand Central Publishing (1999)
ISBN 10: 0446524646 ISBN 13: 9780446524643
Nuevos Tapa dura Cantidad: 2
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Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, Estados Unidos de America)
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Descripción Grand Central Publishing, 1999. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Never used!. Nº de ref. de la librería P110446524646

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Bird, Larry; MacMullan, Jackie
Editorial: Grand Central Publishing
ISBN 10: 0446524646 ISBN 13: 9780446524643
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Diafan Media
(Geneva, IL, Estados Unidos de America)
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Descripción Grand Central Publishing. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. 0446524646 New Condition *** Right Off the Shelf | Ships within 2 Business Days ~~~ Customer Service Is Our Top Priority! - Thank you for LOOKING :-). Nº de ref. de la librería 2BOOK1P35415

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