Picking an All-Time Boston Celtics Team

Dallin KelsonContributor INovember 26, 2008

What-If Sports All-Anything Team: All-Boston Celtics Team

To simulate this team against any NBA or ABA team throughout history, or to match them up against your team and see who wins, follow these steps:

Go to www.whatifsports.com/nba

Select the search tab under home or away.  Select Dream Teams for type of search.  Type in "All-Boston Celtics" and click search.

PG — Bob Cousy ('52-'53)

What other point guard in the history of the NBA has exemplified the position as well as "The Cooz"?  In 13 years, he averaged 18.4 points and 7.5 assists per game.  He invented modern ball-handling with his eye-catching dribbling and unorthodox passing. 

The season of 1952-53 was easily his best, in which he won the first of his assist titles, despite the fact that the shot-clock rule hadn't been implemented yet.  He took the Celtics to the playoffs, where he had one of the best games of his career in an overtime victory over the Syracuse Nationals, before falling to the Knicks in the next round.

SG — Paul Pierce ('05-'06)

Who symbolizes the modern Celtics more than Paul Pierce? 

One of the best in the league at individual competition with other superstars, Pierce was with the Celts through the rough years, and is now enjoying being at the peak of the league with them again.  His play was one of the few bright spots in several dismal years for Celtics fans.  His career scoring average, 23.6 PPG, is second only on the team to Larry Bird.  He's been named an All-Star 6 times. 

Opponent Shaquille O'Neal said about him after a Lakers win over the Celtics in 2001: "I knew he could play, but I didn't know he could play like this. Paul Pierce is the truth."

2005-06 was one of his best campaigns, as he had the highest points-per-shot average among the top 30 scorers in the league.  He set the franchise record for consecutive games of 30 or more points, with eight.  Despite this, the Celtics finished a dismal 16 games out of first place in the Atlantic Division.

SF — Larry Bird ('84-'85)

One of the greatest wing men of all time, and a beloved Celtic to boot, "The Hick from French Lick" was one of the keenest and most versatile players in NBA history. 

Bird was nicknamed "Kodak" due to his perceived ability to take mental pictures of the opposing teams defensive strategy and adjust his own teams' accordingly.  His shooting was some of the best in NBA history, due to the fact that he used to shoot 200 free throws before school every day.

1984-85, Bird led the Celtics to a second straight NBA Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers, however, this time, the Celtics would not beat Magic Johnson and would lose in 6 games.  However, Bird was the MVP of the regular season that year.

PF — Kevin McHale (86-87)

McHale was one of the best offensive players in NBA history.  In the 86-87 season, he turned into a dominant offensive force, calling his moves "the torture chamber" and averaging 26.1 PPG during the 86-87 season, in which he finished fourth in MVP voting.  He was the first NBA player to shoot better than 60% from the field and 80% from the free throw line that season.

C — Bill Russell (63-64)

And who could forget Bill Russell, the epitome of a defensive center? 

He averaged over 22 rebounds a game, excelling also at shot blocking and man-to-man defense. His low scoring (15 PPG) indicates that he was not a focal point of the Celtics offense, but contributed tremendously to their success with his stellar defense and court IQ. 

In the 1963-64 season, Russell averaged 24.7 rebounds a game, a career best, and led the Celtics to an NBA title, with what Russell called the greatest defensive team of all time.


Rajon Rondo ('07-'08), Kevin Garnett ('07-'08), Antoine Walker ('00-'01), Reggie Lewis ('91-'92), John Havlicek ('71-'72), Dave Cowens ('72-'73), and Robert Parish ('88-'89).

Coach — Red Auerbach

As if there was any question.


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