Breaking news:Larry Bird makes rare public speaking appearances during NBA All-Star Weekend

Larry Bird makes rare public speaking appearances during NBA All-Star Weekend

INDIANAPOLIS – Only the NBA All-Star Game in Indianapolis could pull NBA legend Larry Bird from his quiet and good life back into the spotlight.

Not a recluse – he will attend Pacers practices, he’s out and about – but Bird has declined most interview requests since stepping down as the Indiana Pacers’ president of basketball operations in 2017. And even before that, Bird was reluctant, declining a USA TODAY interview request to discuss LeBron James’ fourth MVP in 2013.

It’s his preference to stay out of the spotlight after a lifetime in it as basketball player, coach and executive.

But with All-Star Weekend in Indianapolis (Bird coached the Pacers and led the front office) and his home state (Bird was born in French Lick and played college basketball at Indiana State), Bird agreed to two interviews – one at Friday’s NBA Tech Summit and one with TNT that aired Saturday featuring Bird, Isaiah Thomas and Reggie Miller, two former NBA players with Indiana and Pacers ties.

The discussion panels at the NBA’s Tech Summit – one of the hardest tickets to obtain at All-Star Weekend – was an off-the-record event. However, the NBA on social media posted clips of Bob Costas’ interview with Bird, who nearly seven years ago drove an Indy car four blocks in midtown Manhattan to deliver the Pacers’ All-Star bid to NBA headquarters.

Bird, now 67 years old, is a 10-time All-NBA selection, three-time MVP, three-time champion, two-time Finals MVP, 12-time All-Star, Olympic gold medalist and Basketball Hall of Famer. He is one of the basketball’s greatest players.

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