On This Day – October 12th

On This Day – October 12th
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The 1979 NBA draft saw a young Michigan State University basketball player called Earvin “Magic”Johnson sign for the Los Angeles Lakers. On this day, October 12th, 1979, Johnson made his debut in a 103-102 win over the San Diego Clippers.

Johnson had won the NCAA Championship with Michigan State that year, and he didn’t disappoint on his debut, capturing a large TV audience with his agile passing game and penchant for steals.

Johnson and his Lakers teammates would go on to have a genuine rivalry in the years that followed with the Boston Celtics. On the same night Johnson made his debut, the Celtics had a debutant of their own.

Larry Bird had signed for the Celtics in 1978 as sixth overall pick in the draft; he would though, see out the year first with his college side Indiana State.

It was on this same night though in 1979, that he made his Celtics debut against the Houston Rockets. scoring 14 points, having 10 rebounds and five assists.

But also of significance that night was the feat achieved by Bird’s new teammate, Chris Ford.

His name, is the answer to one of the NBA’s  most famous pieces of trivia.

Ford was the first player to shot a three-pointer in the NBA. The rule came in that season {1979/80} and although Kevin Grevey also scored a three-pointer that same night for the Washington Bullets, Ford is seen as having been the first.

 

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