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Larry Bird Would Prefer Fewer Threes

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Ian Thomsen has a sweet Q & A with Larry Bird on SI.com which delves into the former sharp-shooters thoughts on shots. The only problem is, I wish it was longer. Although I'm not sure there's an appropriate length, since I could read or listen to Larry Joe Legend discuss shooting all day long.

Of special interest, are his comments on three pointers. He's not a big fan and prefers relying on points in the paint.

"I felt like the game is won down in the paint,'' Bird said. "I didn't shoot them until the end of the game. If I shot one early, it was probably on the road.'' When he wanted to make a dramatic impact in an opponent's gym, he means to say.

Bird is aware that his views may be seen as contrary to those of his coach, Jim O'Brien, whose Pacers spread the floor to attempt 19.8 threes per game, ranking fifth in the league.

"I believe in the three-point shot at the right time,'' said Bird, who is president of the Pacers. "I got a coach who loves it, and I back him on it with the type of team we have. We have to play different. We don't have a big man who can score down low. But I see this game as if you want to win and win big, the game is won down in the paint until somebody proves me different.''

So does this mean Jim O'Brien is officially a bridge coach to get the Pacers through their rebuilding seasons until the roster has all of the components Bird envisions?