It’s the one piece of advice the great Larry Bird has for the Gilas Pilipinas team that is set to compete in the 2014 Fiba World Cup in Spain.
Pressed to comment on the team that finished runner-up in the recent 27th Fiba-Asia Men’s Championship, the Indiana Pacers president for basketball operations said: “Keep working and keep playing.”
“Anytime you have a competition and you move up, you have to stay together,” said 'Larry Legend,' a member of the original USA Dream Team that handily won the basketball gold in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.
“You will have your good days and bad days. But overall, you just have to stay together because going in the same direction makes it a lot easier.”
The former Boston forward, who formed part of the Celtics so-called `Big Three’ in the eighties along with Robert Parish and Kevin McHale, now the coach of the Houston Rockets, said these are the very same words of wisdom he tries to inculcate in the minds of the Pacers’ young players every time they make it to the NBA playoffs.
“It’s different. I tell our young players when we start the playoffs the first round, it’s tough. But when you reach the second round, it’s different and as you keep moving up the competition, it will be greater.
“That is why it’s hard to beat the great teams night in and night out, because the level of competition is getting better and better,” said the basketball Hall of Famer.