Larry Bird is reportedly stepping down as the president of the Indiana Pacers. This spring the team took the eventual champs, the Miami Heat, to six games in the Eastern Conference Semifinals and the NBA named Bird its executive of the year.
The Pacers played a great style of physical, team-oriented basketball this season, but one thing Indiana does not have is a transcendent star. So, when Bird makes the official announcement about his resignation, there’s a chance the speech might go something like this:
“Hi, I’m Larry Bird. Thank you all for coming.
We had a great run this year and I’m proud of what our team was able to accomplish. But to be frank, if the Pacers want to win it all they’ll need Larry Bird. I’m talking about a sharp-shooting triple-double machine with an unmatched will to win, not a retired, sharp-shooting triple-double machine with a will to win who’s transitioned to the role of NBA executive.
Having said that, I’m stepping down as president of the Indiana Pacers. And I wish the organization good luck with finding Larry Bird. Not Larry Bird the president of basketball operations, but Larry Bird the player. Rick Pitino once said, “Larry Bird’s not walking through that door.” Well, technically I am, but I’m heading in the wrong direction. Again, I’m quitting, so I don’t see why I’d be back here any time soon and when I leave I’m planning on going waaayyy off the grid for a vacation, so don’t bother tracking me down.
But keep looking for Larry Bird. But an actual player, not just archived footage of me. That won’t help at all. You can’t teach the kind of greatness that a player like me – or any other Larry-Bird-type figure – brings to the table.
I guess that about wraps it up. Thanks again. I think the Indiana Pacers could be even better without Bird, especially if another Larry Legend happens to come along. Wouldn’t hurt to pick up a Kevin McHale and a Robert Parish either. Those guys are retired, but you see what I’m saying.”