The Boston Celtics are the most successful team in NBA history. The team has been a powerhouse in many different NBA era’s. How many titles have the Celtics won? The Boston Celtics have won a total of 17 NBA championships in the team’s history. This makes the Celtics the most successful team in NBA history.
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The Celtics were one of the teams who became part of the NBA in 1949 after the absorption of the NBL. Their first few seasons did not see huge amounts of success as the Celtics did not make it to the finals for the ten years of the team. However, this all changed in 1957 thanks to three big arrivals in the 1950s.
With Bill Russell powering the Celtics, Boston went to their first NBA finals in 1957, beating the St Louis Hawks in seven games thanks in part to MVP Bob Cousy. While Cousy had won the MVP award, Russell would be the one to go on to lead Boston to the most dominant periods in NBA history.
The Hawks got revenge on the Celtics the year after, but Boston were back in the playoffs in 1959. This time they defeated the Lakers, sweeping their future rivals. This win began a streak of eight straight NBA titles mainly thanks to the efforts of 5 times MVP Bill Russell. This record is still the longest NBA finals winning streak and immediately made Boston an NBA powerhouse.
These finals victories included five NBA finals victories against the Lakers as well as two wins against the Hawks. The Celtics were an unstoppable force from 1958 to 1966. This streak ended however in 1967 at the hands of the Philadelphia 76ers in the division finals.
But the Celtics and Russell added to more championships to end the 1960s, beating the Lakers in two more finals. These constant victories began the rivalry between the Celtics and the Lakers which still exists today.
Without Bill Russell, the Celtics only went four seasons without a titles. In 1974, Boston were back in the finals thanks to John Havlicek and Dave Cowen’s. They faced a tough test against Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Oscar Robertson, but the Celtics pulled out the win in seven games for the teams 12th title already.
With Jo Jo White leading the team, Boston were back in the finals two years later after simple 4-2 wins in the first two rounds. Another 4-2 win this time against the Suns took the Celtics to their 13th titles.
Boston’s 14th title came in the team’s second best era. In 1979, Larry Bird joined the Celtics having been drafted by Boston in 1978. With Bird, Cedric Maxwell and Nate Archibald, the Celtics were a dominant force and powered past the Rockets for another title, the teams first with Larry Bird.
Bird and the Celtics made four straight finals in the 1980s, but this time the LA Lakers were able to defeat the Celtics in two of those. Boston were still able to claim two titles. The first was in 1984 with Bird’s first double MVP season culminating in a seven game series win. After a loss, Boston took revenge in 1986.
Another double MVP season from Bird also saw the Celtics face a different opposition in the finals. The Houston Rockets were the Celtics’ opponent in the finals, with Boston only losing one game on their way to the finals. Boston won the series in six games and this ended up being Boston’s 16th title and Bird’s last with the team.
After the title win in 1986, Boston experienced a dry spell particularly through the late 1990s. Boston failed to make the finals for the 20 years following their 1988 finals loss to the Lakers. After two awful seasons for Boston, they made huge trades in the offseason to form the big three of Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen.
In their first season together, the big three won three tight playoff series on their way to Boston’s first finals in 20 years. It was a familiar foe in the finals with Kobe Bryant and the Lakers their opposition. Despite Kobe’s best efforts, Boston took the series in six games thanks mainly to Paul Pierce who was awarded finals MVP.
Despite immediate success for their big three, this 2008 win remains Boston’s last NBA title victory, despite making it back to the finals against the Lakers two years later. Jason Tatum and the young Celtics will be hoping to change this and find Boston their 18th title.
Who is the Boston Celtics all-time leading scorer?
There have been some incredible players to play for the Boston Celtics in the history of the team. NBA legends like Larry Bird, Paul Pierce and Bill Russell have represented the Celtics. But it is not any of those three who is the Celtics all time leading scorer in the regular season. That honour goes to John Havlicek.
There may be a few modern NBA fans who have not heard of John Havlicek. Bill Russell gets the majority of the praise for the Celtics dominance in the 1960s and rightfully so. But Boston certainly would not have had that same success without their 1962 first round pick Havlicek.
The former Ohio State Buckeye played his entire 16 year NBA career with the Celtics. Havlicek’s influence on the Boston team grew as he got used to the conditions of the league, going from a good role player to the team’s best scorer. After Russell retired, Havlicek became the Celtics best player.
He was finals MVP in 1974 and finished his career as an eight time champion and thirteen time all-star. His number 17 is retired by the Celtics and it is easy to understand why. Havlicek averaged 20.8 points per game across his long career and was incredibly consistent. In a whopping sixteen season career, Havlicek only missed 42 games, which is less than three games a year missed.
His consistency is why Havlicek has currently scored more than 2000 regular season points than number two on the Celtics list Larry Bird.
Who has more NBA titles the Lakers or the Celtics
The rivalry between the Lakers and the Celtics is one of the most legendary rivalries in all of NBA history. What makes it so incredible is that both teams have won 17 titles each. They are tied for the most successful teams in the NBA thanks to the Lakers winning the title in 2020.
A big part of the Celtics, Lakers rivalry is their constant matchups in the finals. The Celtics and Lakers have met twelve times in the finals. It did not really begin as a rivalry. Both teams were highly successful in the first few decades of the NBA, reaching the finals constantly. But it was the Celtics who kept winning in the finals.
In the first eight meetings between the two in the finals, Boston won all eight series with four of them going to seven games. It was not really much of a rivalry considering one team was winning a lot more than the other. Thankfully, the Lakers began to fight back quite quickly.
Thanks to the efforts of Kareem Abdul Jabbar and Magic Johnson, the Lakers won two finals meetings in a row between the two teams, firstly in 1985 and then again two years later. It meant this actually turned into a pretty even rivalry as the Lakers became the Showtime Lakers.
Both teams experienced a bit of a lull in the 1990s and Michael Jordan took over the NBA. The Lakers success in the early 2000s was not matched by the Celtics. But after some big trades from both teams, the two met again in the finals in 2008, with Boston coming out 4-2 winners.
The Lakers got their revenge in 2010 with a finals win in seven games. This rivalry has certainly quieted down since the days of Magic Johnson and Larry Bird. With both teams looking good at the moment, hopefully it won’t be long until we see this rivalry renewed.
Who is the greatest Boston Celtics coach of all time?
There have been some legendary coaches for the Boston Celtics, but there is certainly no more successful Celtics head coach than Red Auerbach. Red joined the Celtics in 1950 as the Celtics were desperate to turn around their struggling team. Auerbach certainly turned around the Celtics.
In the sixteen years that he was head coach, the Celtics won nine NBA championships with Red leading Bill Russell and Sam Jones to the most successful NBA dynasty in the history of the sport. His nine total championships make him the second most successful NBA coach of all time, only behind Phil Jackson.
One thing that Red did that Jackson could not is be an incredible executive. As the Celtics GM, Boston won seven more NBA championships with Red being able to rebuild the team brilliantly after Bill Russell retired. He is an NBA legend who pioneered the sport towards racial equality.