As I start this post, the Celtics are up by 5 points in the 1st quarter against the Philadelphia Sixers. IF the Celts win tonight's game, they will set a new franchise record with 19 consecutive wins. The last time the Celtics won 18 straight was in the early 80s (1982, I believe). With last year's championship and the red-hot start the Celtics are having this year, the talk has begun about how good this team is in comparison to past teams. I'm not going to get into that discussion because I hate those comparisons. How can you compare a team competing in the 2000 era NBA vs. the 1980's or 1950's teams? The only thing I will say is that the Celtics have a GREAT team right now and they had a GREAT team in the mid-80's.
Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe has the 85-85 Celtics as the best Celtics team. I will not argue his point. They were 50 -1 at home that year. ONLY one loss at home, including the playoffs.
I have very many memories from those years and many of those great memories are tied to Celtics moments. Some more poignant memories are of my Dad watching the Celtics. He was a huge fan of Larry Bird (LB), Kevin (McHale), Robert Parish (Chief), Danny Ainge, Max, Dennis Johnson (DJ - rest in peace) and company. I was in high school and then attending UMASS Boston during those years. Vivid memories include my Dad sitting in the living room, with one arm on the arm rest and the other with the remote control (so he could turn up the volume). Mainly due to the generational gap and size of my family, there were only a few things we could do together and watching LB and DJ light up the scoreboard was one of them!
I'll always love and miss my Dad (of course) and in many ways I miss the good ole days of the 80s when the old Boston Garden smelled like smoke and The Celtics and Lakers battled it out for a win.
One other quick story: February 1987 I had heard Larry and Bill Walton would be signing autographs at The Harvard Coop so I took a ride over to Harvard Square to check it out. The line was ridiculous! It was literally out the door and down the street maybe a block. Knowing if I went to the back of the line I never would have a chance to see either player, I said "let's walk around - maybe there is a way to get in without waiting in line". Long story short is that I may not have done what would be considered "fair" to those who waited in line, but I did get to have my picture taken with Larry Bird! No regrets.
Here's the Polaroid photo: