Throughout his career, Larry Bird has often been a player named when given comparisons for Luka Doncic. Following the Mavericks eliminating the Phoenix Suns in seven games, the hype for Doncic has gone through the roof.
There is no denying that Luka Doncic has easily been the single best player in the league since the playoffs got underway. Currently, he is posting averages of 30.5 points, 9.8 rebounds, 6.4 assists, and 1.8 steals.
Along with the added hype, there have also been some outlandish takes regarding the Mavericks star. Some are already crowning him the best offensive player in the league, and a former player compared him to an all-time great. "Bad Boys" Pistons member John Salley went as far as to say teams fear playing against Luka Doncic just like they were with Larry Bird when he was at the peak of his powers.
Following this comment, FS1's Skip Bayless was quick to pump the breaks on the comparison. While Bayless doesn't deny how good Doncic is, he still feels the emerging superstar has a long way to go before being put in the conversation with someone like Larry Bird.
"This guy was cold blooded basketball killer. This guy was assassin. This guy would rip your heart out. I'm not sure I'm seeing that in Luka just yet."
Is Skip Bayless right about Luka Doncic and Larry Bird?
Skip Bayless has been known to say some outlandish things on TV, but it's hard to deny his assessment of this matter. Larry Bird is one of the NBA's greatest players, and a major reason the league has grown into what it is today. Luka has been stellar in these playoffs, but it seems a bit premature to put him in the same breath as Bird.
Given their playstyle and physical stature, it's not surprising the two are being compared to one another. While teams might dread having to gameplan for Luka Doncic, he is not as feared as Bird was just yet.
Larry Bird was one of the best players in the NBA during his time, and he let you know. Along with putting on incredible performances almost nightly, the Celtics legend was also a vibrant trash talker. As someone who won multiple championships while squaring off against numerous NBA legends, today's players need to earn their stripes before being put in the same tier as Bird.
This does not mean Luka Doncic is never going to enter that category. He is well on his way to being one of the top players of his generation, but it might be time to pump the breaks a little.