Larry Bird: '80s Players Mimicking My Shooting Form

Basketball legend Larry Bird reflects on his iconic shooting form.

by Nouman Rasool
Larry Bird: '80s Players Mimicking My Shooting Form
© Brian Ach/Getty Images

Larry Bird's indelible mark on NBA history isn't just about his championships or MVP awards; it's also about his shooting form, which became the envy of many aspiring basketball players in the 1980s. The iconic form that Bird possessed wasn't just for show; it was a deadly accurate weapon on the court.

In a recent interview with "NBA on TNT," Larry Bird revealed that he was well aware of the numerous players attempting to replicate his shooting technique during his heyday. "I've seen some young players try to move it over [the side of their head] a little bit," Bird remarked during the exclusive conversation with Reggie Miller and Isiah Thomas, shedding light on the admiration and emulation his shooting style inspired.

Evolution of Bird's Shot

Bird's journey to perfecting his shot was a process of evolution. Initially, like many youngsters, he shot the ball "from the hip." However, under the guidance of one of his coaches, Bird transitioned to shooting from the side of his head, utilizing his arms rather than his hip for propulsion.

This transformation wasn't instantaneous; Bird emphasized the dedication and practice required to refine his technique, underscoring the arduous path to mastery. Isiah Thomas, Bird's former rival, expressed both fascination and frustration with Bird's flawless jump shot, a sentiment shared by many in the basketball world.

Thomas revealed that Bird's shooting prowess even earned him a nickname from his mother-in-law, highlighting the widespread admiration for Bird's skills. Bird's statistics speak volumes about his shooting prowess. With over 40% accuracy from three-point range for six consecutive seasons and membership in the exclusive 50-40-90 club, Bird solidified his status as one of the greatest shooters in NBA history.

His dominance extended beyond mere statistics; Bird's three consecutive victories in the NBA 3-point contest underscored his unparalleled shooting proficiency in an era where the three-point shot was less prominent than it is today.

Larry Bird's impact on basketball transcends his era, as evidenced by the ongoing admiration for his shooting form and the enduring legacy he left on the game.