Arnold “Red” Auerbach
When Arnold “Red” Auerbach died in late 2006 at age 89, the NBA lost a legend, but he left a lot of memories behind. Red actually started with the Washington Capitols and the Tri-Cities Hawks before joining Boston, where he would be part of the franchise for the next 57 years. He got off to the right start in Boston, trading two players to St. Louis for the right to draft Bill Russell, the cornerstone Red built an NBA dynasty around. He coached the Celtics to nine championships, including eight in a row. Even though he could have added more titles to his coaching resume, Red stepped back into the general manager role, acquiring key players to engineer an additional pair of titles in 1968 and 1969.
WORDS TO KNOW
DNP shows up in box scores, and it means “Did Not Play.” Coach's Decision means the coach chose not to put the player in the game. The player did not miss the game because of injury, suspension, or any other reason.
The Final Four for the college women and men are simply the four teams left in the semifinals and finals of the NCAA tournament. The teams are the champions from the four brackets of the NCAA tournament.
The Celtics struggled in the 1970s, but when Red saw Larry Bird, he saw the future of his franchise. Getting Bird in the coop was solid, but Red knew he needed to get several more players to complement Bird's skill. He drew the 1st and 13th picks of the 1981 draft to get center Robert Parish and a draft pick, which he used to draft Kevin McHale. He rescued Dennis Johnson and Bill Walton from their careers in the Northwest and revived them, fitting them into the mix to make the Celtics a smart, deep team. The addition of heady guard Danny Ainge, who annoyed opponents to the point of fits, was sheer brilliance.