In his career, Larry Bird defeated Michael Jordan 23 times, but Magic Johnson prevailed in their matchup with NBA Legends.

In his career, Larry Bird defeated Michael Jordan 23 times, but Magic Johnson prevailed in their matchup with NBA Legends.

Isiah Thomas, Magic Johnson, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar come to mind when you think of the greatest players of the 1980s. Larry Bird was perhaps that generation’s best player. Regarding some of the notable legends from this era, Bird managed to win these matches and maintain his dominance for an extended length of time.

A few of this era’s legends managed to take their team past Bird. Particularly, those three Showtime Lakers players managed to find a way on a team that was the Boston Celtics’ archenemy. Playing for the Lakers, three of the four legends from this era have a winning record against Bird.

Following is Bird’s career record against other NBA legends from the 1980s.

Magic Johnson is the player with the best overall record against Bird. The Lakers and Celtics faced off in three NBA Finals during their prime, with the Lakers coming out on top twice. 1984 saw the Celtics win a single championship. Bird changed as a player in the playoffs, becoming a more reliable scorer.

Having said that, Johnson and Bird each have one Finals MVP and are in the championship game. Johnson ultimately led his Lakers to additional victories over Bird. There is always one player who has the other player’s number. For Bird, Johnson was the one.

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