Celtics 62-49 Without Bird

1990-91 Boston Celtics

It had to happen sooner or later. And it did, after 31 games. For that, the Celtics can feel fortunate.

Larry Bird's absence from last night's game with the Knicks marked the first time this year that one of the seven regulars has missed a game. The Celtics simply said, so what?, and went out and ripped the Knicks, 101-87.

"It's no surprise to us," said Robert Parish. "We know what we're capable of doing. We just have to go out and do it."

Added coach Chris Ford, "We weren't out to prove we could win without Larry. Most of these guys were here when he missed the season two years ago."

Bird missed seven games last season -- he hasn't gone the full 82 since 1985-86 -- and last night was the 111th in his career missed because of injury. The Celtics are 62-49 in those games. Bird also has missed five playoff games, in which the Celtics are 0-5.

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