The National Basketball Association’s most successful franchise, the Boston Celtics, has existed since the league’s founding.
Since 1946, the Celtics have missed the playoffs fewer times than they’ve won the NBA Finals. Seventeen championship banners hang from the TD Banknorth Garden’s rafters.
The history of this basketball organization is fitting for the team that hails from the sport’s founding state.
Boston is the only North American professional sports team that can boast eight consecutive championships, and the team also won 10 out of a possible 11 during one stretch.
From 1956-86, the Boston Celtics’ championship percentage was .533. For three decades, the Boston Celtics won more championships than the rest of the league’s teams combined.
These are statistics that even Tiger Woods cannot touch.
So how do you possibly rank the top five Celtics’ teams to ever walk onto the parquet?
First of all, it’s pretty clear you need to narrow things down a bit. If you eliminate the years where the Celtics failed to make the playoffs, there are still 47 candidates to choose from.
There aren’t many professional sports franchises where one can stipulate a championship as a requirement for a season ranking in the top five. This, however, is exactly what must be done to narrow the potential candidates down to a workable list of seventeen.
Although there were many impressive Celtics squads over the years that fell short of the game’s most prized award, the ultimate goal of any professional sports team is to win its league’s championship. So for that reason, the field has been narrowed to the aforementioned seventeen Boston teams.
Let’s begin the rankings: