"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
The Red Auerbach folklore is extensive: The seven basic plays, plus options. The victory cigar. The Chinese food. The legendarily bad driving. The way he protected the owner du jour's money even better than he did his own. The love of Asian art and furniture. The letter opener collection. The image of him with the rolled-up program battling such referee foils as Sid Borgia and Mendy Rudolph. The love of tennis and racquetball. The chutzpah to draft the NBA's first black player, Chuck Cooper, in 1950; the further chutzpah to start five black players in the 1964-65 season; and even more chutzpah to name Bill Russell his successor when he retired from coaching in 1966.
And more: The fact that during the Bird Era he was not to be disturbed between 4 and 5 in his office because that's when he watched "Hawaii 5-0."
I always thought the piratical old SOB would outlive me and everything else except the cockroaches.
Hero, liar, racial pioneer, cheapskate, a man I hated in youth and am weeping as I write his obit. Sports and the world are duller and poorer places this morning.
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Hub Blog picks its all-time greatest Celtics teams from the Auerbach era:
First team: Head coach, Red Auerbach. Center, Bill Russell. Guards, Dennis Johnson and Jo Jo White. Forwards, Larry Bird and Kevin McHale.
Second team: Head coach, Tom Heinsohn. Center, Robert Parish. Guards, Bob Cousy and Sam Jones. Forwards, John Havlicek and Paul Silas.
Backups for any of those teams: K.C. Jones, Dave Cowens, Bill Sharman, Don Nelson, Cedric Maxwell, Frank Ramsey and Satch Sanders.
Wouldn't it have been great to see the two above teams go at it?... I'd certainly take either team today and watch them pound the current NBA crop.
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Readers of the Celtics board at Boston.com were asked how the team might best honor Red Auerbach's memory. These two respondents hit the nail on the parquet:
Message #6730.3 The Celtics should honor Red by: 1) terminating the Celtics dance team, 2) offering pastrami on rye sandwiches and cigars in the arena (I refuse to call it the Garden) 3) buying back the naming rights of the arena and naming it after Red 4) and putting a winner on the court
Message #6730.36 Get rid of the idiotic Dance Team NOW!! And get rid of the entire Bimbo Brigade the Celtics trot out every game. Enough of the Dallas Mavericks-ization of what WAS the proudest franchise in sports.
Boston fans at the old Garden once booed an organist who tried to innovate by introducing the Mexican Hat Dance. Today, the Cs have their own dancers, whose charms, while considerable, do not exactly represent an organic addition to the legacy of the Cooz, black high-tops and Johnny Most.
Mr. Seal, though, may appreciate Danielle, who embodies the new Celtic Mystique as filtered through Albert Vargas.