Season by Season
Celtics Outlast Hawks for First
1956 to 1957
Russell celebrates the '57 Championship
The season marked the beginning of what would become
sports' greatest dynasty, the reign of the Boston Celtics that would
produce 11 championships in 13 years. The Celtics had employed the
group of Bob Cousy, Bill Sharman and Ed Macauley to score points in
bunches for some time, but without rebounding and defense, they hadn't
progressed very far in the Playoffs. But Red Auerbach traded Macauley
and Cliff Hagan to St. Louis for the draft rights to center Bill Russell
of San Francisco, and Boston used its own pick to grab high-scoring
6-7 forward Tom Heinsohn of Holy Cross.
With Russell and Heinsohn joining Cousy, Sharman, muscleman Jim Loscutoff
and sixth man Frank Ramsey, the Celtics had assembled a team that would
be the scourge of the league for years to come. Sharman (21.1 ppg) and
Cousy (20.6) still piled up the points, but with Russell anchoring a
suddenly-tough Celtics defense, Boston cruised to a league-best 44-28
record, winning the Eastern Division by a comfortable six games. St.
Louis, buoyed by the addition of Macauley (16.5 ppg) and Hagan, advanced
to the Finals in the West. A classic seven-game series ensued, with
Boston winning a thrilling Game 7 in Boston, 125-123 in double overtime.
CELTICS CLAIM FIRST CHAMPIONSHIP
Game 7 of the 1957 NBA Finals was the type of game that could advance
a sport by its sheer excitement. It was a game that would be talked
bout for years: how rookies Russell (19 points, 32 rebounds) and Heinsohn
(37 points, 23 rebounds) stepped up and provided the win that would
set the Celtic dynasty in motion.
"The first one (championship) is always the hardest, and it's also
the most satisfying," reflected Auerbach. "Everywhere I went
that following summer, I could tell myself, `I'm the coach of the world
NBA History Season by Season
Sharp Labs Inc.™
Try A search In Google Now!
Try A search
In Yahoo Now!
Copyright Sharp Labs Inc.,