The Boston Celtics lead the NBA with 17 titles, so could you imagine if the organizations best players over the last seven-plus decades were to all take the floor together?
What would that look like, and who from the team’s storied history would make the cut?
Well, ESPN dove into just that, as the Worldwide Leader created the Celtics’ best-ever starting five. It was part of a bigger picture that the network put together, doing the same with each NBA franchise and starting with the Eastern Conference on Wednesday.
Here’s who they included in regards to the Celtics, first starting with their selections:
Guards: Bob Cousy, John Havlicek
Forwards: Paul Pierce, Larry Bird
Center: Bill Russell
With the depth and breadth of history the Celtics have accrued over the past 70-plus seasons, there are plenty of candidates to be in their all-time starting five. That said, coming up with this list was simpler than expected.
The backcourt is led by Cousy, the NBA’s original great guard who made 12 All-NBA teams and won six championships. He’s joined by Havlicek, a Swiss Army knife in human form who fits perfectly on this team as its shooting guard. The frontcourt has two equally obvious choices: Russell, the greatest winner in the history of the sport, and Bird, a three-time MVP.
The one difficult decision was at the remaining spot, where there were two deserving choices: Kevin McHale and Pierce. In the end, Pierce’s Finals MVP helps him earn the nod.
Now that’s a team who would certainly bring banner No. 18 back to Boston.
Thumbnail photo via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports