Every time Larry Bird spoke on his shooting, his legend only grew as he utterly embarrassed opponents with his mouth and then his sweet shooting stroke alike. Now, the Celtics legend is putting past and present Golden State Warriors stars in the same conversation as himself.
On Monday, Bird spoke on the Dan Patrick Show, when the host looked for Bird to put NBA MVP Stephen Curry's shooting ability in historical context.
Patrick asked Bird, "Can you say after four or five years that he's (Curry) the best shooter we've ever seen?"
Bird disputed the notion, but brought up a surprising name in the process. "No, I don't know about that," said Bird, before he continued with, "Chris Mullin was pretty good."
Mullin, who is now currently the head coach for the St. John's men's basketball team, played 13 seasons with the Warriors before being enshrined into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2011.
For his 16-year career, Mullin averaged 18.2 points (20.1 with Warriors), 4.1 rebounds (4.4 with Warriors) and 3.5 assists (3.9 with Warriors) per game. He also shot 50.9 percent from the field with a 38.4 3-point percentage and an 86.5 free throw percentage.
Quickly in the interview, Patrick transitioned over to Curry's long-range dominance.
"If I say the best deep shooter in the game," Patrick said, to which Bird responded, "Yup, I'd say he's right there... deep shooters, Curry's one of the best."
Patrick ended by asking Bird if he's in the conversation for best deep shooter of all-time, and without hesitation, Bird simply said, "Yup," before going on to say, "Sure I am. Didn't say I'm the best, but I'm in the conversation."
The numbers certainly back both he and Curry in that conversation.
Bird, a 12-time All-Star and 1998 Hall of Fame inductee, averaged 24.3 points, 10 rebounds, 6.3 assists, and 1.7 steals per game. His shooting prowess includes a 49.6 percentage from the field, 37.6 from 3-point range, and 88.6 from the charity strike.
Six years into his career, Curry is putting his shooting numbers up with Bird to make his own legend. He's averaged 20.9 points, 4.1 rebounds, 6.9 assists, and 1.7 steals per game, but even more notably next to Bird, Curry has a 47.1 field goal percentage and has shot 44 percent from 3-point range and 90 percent from the free throw line.
Only time will tell if Curry's numbers as one of the games all-time great shooters can hold up next to Bird and Mullin.