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Bird Outperformed Magic, Yet He Finished Third

May 30, 1987

While attending the second game of the Laker-Seattle series, I was struck by several images. Beginning with the presentation to Magic Johnson of the much-deserved and overdue MVP trophy. This was followed by a Laker offense no longer geared solely to the talents of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, but now in the capable hands of Magic.

One man perhaps at the pinnacle of his career, the other certainly in the twilight of his. Yet, the final quarter provided the most telling image of all. As Magic received the ball down low, he looked right, swung left and launched a picture perfect skyhook.

It appears the legacy lives on, but perhaps in the future whenever this shot is attempted, it should be called the "Captain Hook" in honor of the man who led the Lakers for so long and so well.

PATRICK BLAIR

Costa Mesa

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