The Boston Celtics are a professional basketball club from Boston, Massachusetts. From 1957 until 1969, the Celtics were one of the most successful sports clubs in history, winning 11 of 13 National Basketball Association (NBA) titles. They have won 17 NBA championships in all. The Celtics played their home games at the Boston Garden from 1955 to 1973 and again in 1994.
They are one of only three teams to have ever beaten all four current NBA champions (the Los Angeles Lakers, Chicago Bulls, and Cleveland Cavaliers also hold this honor).
The Celtics are part of the NBA's Atlantic Division with the Brooklyn Nets, New York Knicks, and Philadelphia 76ers.
They play their home games at TD Garden, which they share with the NHL's Boston Bruins. The Celtics are based in Boston's North Shore area, about 20 minutes by public transportation from downtown Boston.
Their original name was the Boston Braves; they changed their name before their first season began because several other teams had already chosen names containing "Braves".
During World War II, when baseball and basketball were not being played due to weather conditions or war restrictions, the Celtics played numerous exhibition games against military bases across America and Europe. These games served as goodwill gestures during times when America's best players were off fighting in the war.
The Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers have won the most NBA titles. The Celtics have won 17 championships, while the Lakers have won 14, with no other club winning more than six. The two teams have been in the same league since it began in 1948, when the Lakers joined as an expansion team, so they've shared in all of the accomplishments of that era.
The question is, which team is the greatest of all time? That's like asking which movie star is the greatest actor - the answer depends on how you define "greatest". If you mean best overall player, then surely it's Moses Malone vs. Kobe Bryant. If you mean best champion, then it's hard to argue against Kareem Abdul-Jabbar or Michael Jordan. And if you mean most valuable player (MVP) over a single season, then it's again hard to argue against either one of them. There have been many great players over the years who have not reached the level of fame or notoriety of some of these legends, so they wouldn't even make the top five.
In conclusion, both the Celtics and the Lakers are great clubs, and there's no clear-cut winner between them.
The 2009–10 Boston Celtics season was the team's 64th in the National Basketball Association (NBA). The Celtics concluded with a 50-32 record, a 12-win decrease from the previous season. They won the Atlantic Division and finished fourth in the Eastern Conference.
It was the first time since 2002 that the C's did not qualify for the playoffs. It was also the first time since 1999 that they failed to make the postseason after posting at least 40 wins during each of the previous seven seasons. The last time they had such a poor showing was right before the Lakers' Shaquille O'Neal came aboard as a Celtic in 1996-97.
By losing their final four games, including three on the road, the Celtics were eliminated from playoff contention on April 16. This is when Danny Ainge went over the salary cap to sign Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett.
A year after winning the NBA Championship, the Celtics had another disappointing campaign. They lost many of their stars to injuries and struggled to find good chemistry on the court.
After losing their first two games by an average margin of 17 points, the Celtics started to play better basketball and eventually turned things around. By March, they had won 10 of their last 13 games, including five in a row. But they still could not overcome the top-seeded Wizards in the playoffs.
On April 11, 1967, after winning eight consecutive NBA titles, the Boston Celtics were defeated by the Philadelphia Sixers, 140-116, in Game 5 of the Eastern Division playoffs. So the Celtics' reign came to an end, but only momentarily. Boston went on to win the following two seasons, giving the Celtics ten championships in 11 years.
During this period, the Celtics won more games than any other team in NBA history. They also lost more games than any other team during this time. The only negative aspect was that they appeared in the playoff series every year but one (they withdrew before the first round in 1969). This relentless pursuit of victory may have taken a toll on Bob Cousy and his teammates. In 1970, Bill Russell announced his retirement after 19 seasons with the Celtics. Even though he continued to play until 1972, Boston never again won a championship.
The 1967-68 season saw the emergence of 6-foot-8 rookie player Kevin McHale, who played in 76 games that season and averaged 7.4 points per game. He became a mainstay on the C's roster for many years to come.
After the 1966-67 season, the Celtics decided not to extend their contract with Russell, making him a free agent for the first time in his career. On October 31, 1967, the day after the season ended, the Celtics signed Russell to a three-year deal worth $750,000. This made him the highest-paid player in the league.
After the Los Angeles Lakers, the 76ers are regarded as the Celtics' second most important foe. In the 1950s, the Syracuse Nationals and Boston Celtics competed in the Eastern Division. In 1954, 1955, and 1956, the Nationals defeated the Celtics in three consecutive playoff series, earning the NBA Championship in 1955. During this period, the two teams were close friends who would trade players back and forth. However, after the Celtics traded away their star player, Bill Russell, the friendship ended.
The Celtics and Sixers have been rivals since the 1970s when both teams moved to Boston. The two teams compete for fans, respect, and sometimes even life itself. They have met in the playoffs every year since 1977 with the exception of 1997 when the 7th-seed Sixers lost to the 4th-seed Nets in one game. The Celtics lead the all-time series 93-76.
Other notable rivals include the Knicks, who played in Boston from 1946 to 1972, the Lakers, and the Pacers.
In addition to these teams, the Celtics used to be rivals with the Philadelphia Warriors, Baltimore Bullets, and Washington Bullets during the early years of the NBA. All of these teams have since become allies or friends instead, with the exception of the Warriors who they still battle annually for third place in the East.
Finally, the Celtics used to be rivals with the Buffalo Braves, New York Knicks, and San Francisco Warriors in the ABA.