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Rare Footage Of The Time Magic Johnson And Larry Bird Were Teammates Before The Dream Team

Magic Johnson and Larry Bird

No two players in NBA history have had a deeper rivalry than Magic Johnson and Larry Bird.

As two of the biggest names in the sport, playing for two of the NBA's most prestigious teams, they were often in each other's way and were viewed as enemies in almost every sense of the word.

So when the pair teamed up for a charity game in 1986, it's no surprise that it was such a big event. For the first time ever, Magic and Bird wore the same jersey -- and it became clear they enjoyed playing on the same side.

Footage of the game recently surfaced online, which features reactions from both players.

The game took place back in August of 1986, in the Edwin W. Pauley Pavilion in Los Angeles, with all proceeds used to support the UNCF or the "United Negro College Fund." The blue team (with Magic and Bird, who combined to score 45 points) included names like Mark Aguirre and Herb Williams. In the end, however, it was the white team that won, behind big performances from Ralph Sampson and Isiah Thomas.

While it was one of the rare times Magic and Bird shared the same side of the court, it wasn't the first, nor was it the last.

Back in 1978, the two played for Team USA together at the World Invitational Tournament.

Of course, their most famous union would come in 1992. Dubbed 'The Dream Team,' Johnson and Bird joined forces with Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Karl Malone, John Stockton, and others to chase the gold medal and form what many call the greatest basketball team ever assembled. During the stint, the guys formed bonds that lasted long after the tournament was over.

Throughout their careers, Magic and Bird were always connected. They came into the league at the same time and were always in each other's way. At first glance, one might truly believe they hated each other.

But in between all the competition, they showed hints of mutual respect and admiration.