Devastating and Embarrassing News of Larry Bird has been confirmed by Kemp

Shawn Kemp Confirms Wild & Embarrassing Larry Bird Story

It’s widely known that Boston Celtics legend Larry Bird was one of the most confident players the NBA has ever seen. He was also one of the biggest trash talkers. Former Seattle SuperSonics star Shawn Kemp found out first hand as a rookie.

As the story goes, Bird would tell certain defenders exactly what he was going to do in a game before he actually went out and did it. Kemp, an athletic 6-foot-10, 230-pound forward/center was one of those defenders. Some may believe Bird’s trash-talking stories might be often exaggerated. Thirty-five years later, Kemp confirmed that was not the case.Shawn Kemp

Shawn Kemp Admits Larry Bird Embarrassed Him During His Rookie Season

Maybe it was Kemp’s welcome-to-the-NBA moment. On December 13, 1989, The Sonics headed to Boston to face Bird and the Celtics. Boston’s championship reign in the 1980s was over. Bird, Kevin McHale, and Robert Parish were past their prime after winning three titles in the decade.

While Bird battled back, elbow, and foot problems, he still had the drive. He still had the confidence. Kemp came into the NBA as a hyped-up rookie after being selected with the 17th overall pick in the 1989 NBA Draft. Athletically gifted, Kemp went on to become a six-time NBA All-Star.

As a rookie, Kemp was eased into life in the NBA. That changed in Boston when he was pressed into guarding Bird, even if was only for a few minutes.

“We got to Boston that night, and (Xavier McDaniel) had some knee pain,” Kemp said during a 2024 appearance on the “All the Smoke” podcast. “I was like, it’s a hell of a time for you to come up with knee pain.

“I look in the mirror and I’m like, well I’m about to give this (expletive) fits out here tonight. Before the game, I was rubbing my hands, looking at (Bird), like I’m gonna get your ass, man.

“That morning, they came out with a USA Today article, and it said that Larry didn’t have it no more. So, he came out that night to make a statement. Before the game, he just shook his head and told me, ‘Man, it’s going to be a (expletive)-up night for you.’

Bird finished the night with a 40-point triple-double. He had 40 points, 10 assists, and 11 rebounds.

Not only did Bird make 17 of his 27 shots, but he also told Kemp how he was going to get them. It was an embarrassing night for Kemp, who played 13 minutes against the Boston icon.

“He was actually calling out bank shots,” Kemp admitted. “He would say, ‘Next time, bank shot left side. I’m gonna pump-fake you, and your dumb ass is gonna go for it.’

“I said, ‘First of all, I’m gonna be so close to you that if you shoot the ball, I’m going to try to rip your (expletive) arm off. What do you think he did? Quick pump-fake, dog, and he just (scored).”

Despite Bird’s big night against the rookie, Kemp said Bird reached out to him after the game.

“I guarded his ass so tough that after the game, he sent a little letter over there to me,” Kemp said. “He was like, I’ve had nobody play defense that hard on me. I appreciate you. Then he was like, I got a little All-Star Game. Why don’t you come work out with me and then come to the All-Star Game.

“That meant everything to me. It went from him whoopin’ my ass to him teaching me a few things. I surely appreciate it.”


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