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Shawn Kemp On Larry Bird In Today's NBA: "If Luka Is Doing 27 A Game, Larry’s Scoring 35 A Game. Larry Bird Would Be James Harden In Today’s Game.”

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(via NBA.com)

(via NBA.com)

Larry Bird is one of the most respected former players in the NBA. His tenure with the Boston Celtics was legendary, and his battles with Magic Johnson got many into the game of basketball. Larry Bird was known as a great shooter during his time, having won the 3PT contest a total of three times. Larry Bird shot 37.6% from 3PT range for his career as well, a solid mark. For that era of basketball, Bird had top tier shooting, and many wonder how Larry Bird would translate to the modern NBA, which focuses on the outside shot.

Shawn Kemp may have an answer for us. The former Supersonics star came on to Inside Buzz with Mikey Domagala and talked about the Celtics great in a segment of the video. Kemp played against Bird during the latter's twilight years, not quite peak Larry Bird, but still effective. The segment on Bird starts at 10:45.

Shawn Kemp suggests that Larry Bird could be an MVP caliber player in the modern NBA. Kemp praises Bird for his shooting touch and stated that earlier in his career, Bird could easily dunk on you with his athleticism, which is a departure from his reputation as a shooter. Kemp also says that Bird was more athletic than Luka Doncic, so in today's era, he would end up an MVP caliber player due to all the shooting. Comparing him to James Harden seems fairly reasonable, considering Bird's own stardom during his era.

While it is impossible to predict whether a player could succeed in a given NBA era, it does seem like Bird's game would be perfect for today's game. Larry Bird was a forward who impacted the game with his shooting, defense, and passing: all valuable traits for a modern forward, rather than the inside game of years past. Larry Bird would be elite in the positionless era, and it's a shame we don't get to see that happen.