Top 50 Boston Celtics

There are successful NBA Teams, and there are the Boston Celtics.

Seriously, this is no hyperbole.  The Celtics have been that much more successful than any other franchise in the National Basketball Association with 17 titles, one more than the Los Angeles Lakers, their longtime rival.

Formed in 1946, The Boston Celtics were part of the Basketball Association of America and would become part of the NBA in 1949 when the league absorbed them.  The first years in the NBA were not pretty for the Celtics, but they would become a league powerhouse built by Red Auerbach and based around the superstar Center, Bill Russell.  Russell and the perfect cast around him (that would include at times Bob Cousy, Tom Heinsohn, Willie Naulls, K.C. Jones, and Sam Jones) would put forth the greatest dynasty in North American team sports. 

From 1957 to 1969 Boston won 11 Titles. Think about that for a minute.  11 NBA Championships in 13 NBA Seasons.  This is a dynasty that may never happen again.

This wasn’t it for the Celtics.

Boston would win the championship twice in the 1970s (1974 and 1976) with the acquisition of Dave Cowens and Heinsohn as their big two, but the decade after would be more dynamic.  The Celtics drafted Larry Bird, and along with Kevin McHale and Robert Parish, the Celtics had a trio that would win the title in 1981, 1984 & 1986.

It would take another "big three" in Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen to win it again in 2008, the Celtics' 17th overall.


This list is up to the end of the 2020-21 regular season.

Note: Basketball lists are based on an amalgamation of tenure, traditional statistics, advanced statistics, playoff statistics, and post-season accolades.

Antoine Walker was a champion at the University of Kentucky, and he would be drafted 6th Overall by Boston in 1996, though the Celtics were no longer the dominant team they used to be.  The Power Forward would be Boston's primary offensive weapon, and he would be named an All-Star in his sophomore season when he averaged 22.4 Points per Game.  Walker would be a workhorse, and in 2001-02 he would lead the NBA in…
Reggie Lewis was a late round draft pick in 1987, and the product of Northeastern University played less than ten minutes a game as a rookie, so it surprised some when he would blossom when gaining minutes due to Larry Bird's injury and would have an 18.5 PPG season as a sophomore.  Lewis would become the starting Shooting Guard, and in 1991/92 and 1992/93 he averaged just over 20 Points per Game, with the first…
Bailey Howell had already been to five All-Star Games (four with Detroit and one with Baltimore) before he arrived in Boston for the back nine of his career.  Howell wasn't putting the same numbers that he did before in Boston, but he was now on a more loaded team, and when you are a teammate of Bill Russell, you didn't have to lead the team in boards.  Howell was a strong presence in their NBA…
Ainge actually played for the Toronto Blue Jays before he was drafted by the Boston Celtics, who chose him 31st Overall in 1981 and after a rocky start, he would find his role in professional basketball as a pesky agitator and occasional scorer.  Ainge would help Boston win two titles (1984 & 1986) and was a bit of a surprise as an All-Star in 1988.  The Guard would average 11.3 Points per Game over the…
Yes, we know that Thomas' stay in Boston only encompassed two years and change, but he was on fire especially in his last year in Boston and was the man who carried Boston further than they had any right to be at the time.
Dennis Johnson played the last half (seven years) of his career with the Coston Celtics after already going to four All-Star Games and winning the NBA Championship in 1979 with the Seattle SuperSonics.  "D.J." was already one of the best defensive guards, and as a Celtic, he would continue to provide that with four All-Defensive Selections (one First Team and three Second Teams).  Johnson was scoring as much as he had before, but with Boston,…
Paul Silas was with the Boston Celtics for four seasons, directly after he was chosen for his first All-Star Game with the Phoenix Suns.  Silas was much happier in Boston, and every season that he donned the green, Silas averaged a double-double, specifically posting 11.5 Points and 12.3 Rebounds per Game as a Celtic.  The Power Forward wasn't a great shooter, but his pay was based on his rebounding prowess, and Silas was damned good…
This one can be considered a little tricky. When Kyrie Irving surprisingly requested a trade from Cleveland (to get away from LeBron, let's be honest!), Boston arguably stole him in the deal considering that the best player that they gave up, Isaiah Thomas was never the same after that hip injury that took him out during the previous playoffs.  Irving wanted to prove he could lead a powerhouse team, and he did…sort of.
When you think of Dee Brown's career, most people point to his electrifying win with the no-look slam dunk that won the competition in 1991.  That is not a bad way to be remembered, but beyond that you had a good player who split his time between Point and Shooting Guard who would have two straight years averaging over 15 Points per Game (1993-94 & 1994-95), the first of which would see him also finish…
After one year at Duke, Jayson Tatum was a proven lottery pick, taken third overall in the 2017 Draft.  It didn’t take long for Tatum to prove the Celtics correct in selecting him. Blessed with incredible footwork and slick shooting, Tatum was an All-Rookie and an immediate starter, usually at Small Forward.  As of this writing, Tatum is a four-year vet, and his production gradually increased each year, starting from 13.9 to 26.4 last year. Tatum is…
Chaney was the 12th overall pick from the University of Houston where as a rookie he was part of the Celtics’ 1969 Championship win, the last of the 60’s dynasty.  The Guard would star on the defensive side of the ball, being named a Second Team All-Defensive Selection four times as a Celtic and would have four years of 10 plus Points per Game.  Chaney was with Boston for most of his career, save for…
Larry Siegfried took a longer way than many to get to the Celtics as he was drafted by 3rd in the 1961 Draft by the Cincinnati Royals, a team the former Ohio State Buckeye surprisingly did not want to play for. Instead, he elected to play for the Cleveland Pipers of the American Basketball League and would win a title in that league but the league folded and he would sign with the St. Louis…
Nate “Tiny” Archibald was an absolute beast for the Kansas City Kings, and the stats he put up there can't be forgotten, and when we get to an all-relocated team, we will put up a shrine for him.  A torn Achilles would take him out of the 1977-78 Season (where he was with the Buffalo Braves), and he would be traded to Boston where he would take over as their starting Point Guard.
Kevin Gamble struggled to find a spot in the NBA and when he did it was with Portland, who would waive him after a few Games.  The Celtics would sign him with little expectation, but he would work his way to the team for six seasons.  The Small Forward would have four straight years with a PPG over 11, with a 15.6 season in 1990/91.
As of this writing, Marcus Smart is entering his eighth season in the NBA, all of which have been with the Boston Celtics.  The 2014 6th Overall Pick from Oklahoma State, Smart was a good pickup for the Celtics and earned Second Team All-Rookie honors with a 7.8 Point and 1.5 Steals per Game season.  Smart would later have two straight seasons where he averaged over 10 Points per Season (2016-17 & 2017-18), and while…
Fox may have been more known in his career with the Los Angeles Lakers where he would help them win the NBA Title three times, but before that, he played for the Boston Celtics for six years where he had his best individual numbers.  With Boston, he would average 10.7 Points per Game with his last two seasons there seeing him exceed the 14 PPG threshold.  He would also exceed a PER of 16 in…
Taken number 3 in the 2016 Draft after playing a year at California, Jaylen Brown has to date played five seasons with the Boston Celtics where he emerged as an All-Star Brown was an All-Rookie player, but he would become a starter in his second year, doubling his PPG from 6.6 to 14.5. His third season was a year of regression, as he lost his shooting touch, and only started 20 Games, but Brown’s fourth year…
Ed Pinckney will always be best known for leading Villanova in 1985 to the NCAA Championship where he was named the Final Four Most Outstanding Player.  As a professional, his longest run was with the Boson Celtics where he was mostly used as a change of pace Power Forward coming off the bench.  Pinckney was not a star but was efficient, showing off a nice PER of 15.6 as a Celtic over 340 Games.  Overall,…
Dana Barros signed with the Celtics as a Free Agent the year after he was named an All-Star and the Most Improved Player of the Year Award with the Sixers.  With all due respect to Barros, the Celtics didn’t get that player, though the Point Guard did get a hometown player who gave them solid efficiency (16.4 PER) and a 10.1 PPG.  Barros' first two seasons in Boston would see him average 12.8 Points, and…
A member of the 2008 NBA Championship Team, Kendrick Perkins arrived in Boston as part of a draft-day trade.  Kendrick, who was drafted late in the 1st Round, would provide an above-average defense to the Celtics and he would have two straight top five Defensive Rating finishes (2007-08 & 2008-09).  Perkins would act as the team's enforcer if need be and that toughness is hard to quantify, but we hope we did so appropriately on…