May 3, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Celtics small forward Paul Pierce (34) during the second quarter in game six of the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs against the New York Knicks at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

All-Time Boston Celtics Team: The Small Forward Vote


Welcome back, Boston Celtics fans!

So far, my All-Time Celtics Team series has nominated four players each at the point guard and shooting guard position.  Those polls are still open, so vote now if you have not done so already!

If you thought there was some healthy competition at the guard spots, though, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet!  There was no way I could cut down the list of worthy Celtics’ small forwards to four, so we’re going with five today, and I could easily have gone six.

What should every good conversation have in it?  Why, an element of The Truth, of course!  (See what I did there, eh?)  Paul Pierce may finish his distinguished NBA career as a player on the Brooklyn Nets’ roster, but you can bet that you’ll see his Number 34 jersey hanging from the rafters of the TD Bank Garden soon enough once he retires.   The Truth spent 15 seasons playing in Boston, enduring some pretty rough seasons before finally leading the Celtics to a championship in 2008 and another Finals appearance two seasons later.  Take a look around the Celtics’ leaders – you’ll find his name listed among the top ten of an awful lot of statistical categories.  He leads the Celtics in 3-pointers made, free throws made, and steals; is second in points scored and points per game; and is third in many other categories.  He was the unquestioned heart and soul of the Celtics for over a decade, and his absence from the Cs will be missed for the next few years, at least.

Before Pierce, there was Reggie Lewis, the man whose career was sadly cut short during an off-season practice in 1993.  Lewis faced the gargantuan task of helping an aging Larry Bird return the Celtics’ to the upper echelon of the NBA, and while he never enjoyed the success that Bird’s teams in the 80s enjoyed, Lewis also didn’t have anywhere near the supporting cast the Larry Legend had at his disposal during those dominant years.  Lewis is still one of the Celtics’ top-ten shot blockers, and he is the only Boston player to record 100 rebounds, 100 assists, 100 steals, and 100 blocks in a single season.  He also blocked Michael Jordan four times in one game – check it out:

Speaking of Larry Bird . . . I have to be honest: Bird is my favorite athlete of all time.  Doesn’t matter which sport we’re discussing; if you told me there was only one athlete in the history of sports whose games I could watch, I would pick Larry Bird 100 out of 100 times.   He was everything you want a player on your team to be: he was clutch; he was savvy; he sacrificed his body to make play after play; he was psychologically intimidating; he never gave up on a play, or a game, EVER; and he was unstoppable.  The only thing that ever stopped Larry Bird were injuries, usually the result of the pounding that his body took from battling for rebounds and loose balls.  Just like Pierce, Bird’s name is scattered throughout the Celtics’ record books, but Bird has the edge on The Truth with three championships, three MVP awards, and two NBA Finals MVP awards.

You may think the argument for the Celtics’ all-time small forward begins and ends with Larry Legend . . . but you would be as wrong as wrong could be, since we have yet to discuss the man who sits atop five of the Celtics all-time records, John “Hondo” Havlicek.   Most games played.  Most minutes played.  Most field goals made and attempted.  Most points scored.  Eight  NBA championships won, behind only Bill Russell and Sam Jones for the most won by a member of the Boston Celtics.  NBA Finals MVP once.  A thirteen-time NBA All-Star.  He was relentless, tireless, and a fierce defender.  Good lord, the man epitomizes what it is to be a “Boston Celtic.”

Last, but certainly not least, on today’s list is Frank Ramsey.  Considered to be the first (and some would argue, the best) sixth man in the NBA, Ramsey was a key player in the Celtics dynasty that won eleven championships in thirteen years and eight in a row from 1959-1966 (Ramsey was a player for seven of those titles).  Ramsey’s place in Celtic history cannot be ignored, which is why he made it onto this list.

All right – that was exhausting!  Time for you to take over.  Vote, and leave any comments you may have below!

Who would you start at small forward for the All-Time Boston Celtics team?

  • Larry Bird (87%, 104 Votes)
  • John Havlicek (9%, 11 Votes)
  • Paul Pierce (4%, 5 Votes)
  • Reggie Lewis (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Frank Ramsey (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 120

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Tags: Boston Celtics Featured Larry Bird Paul Pierce Popular Reggie Lewis

  • guest

    John Havlicek would be my starting shooting/big guard on my All-Time Celtics team

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Thanks for the read! I know Hondo could play both guard and forward, but I’d feel better with a bomber like Allen or Ainge at the shooting guard than Havlicek. Just my two cents!

      • guest

        Why don’t you put it back to a vote for the All Time Celtic starting shooting gaurd and this time include Hondo. I think you would be in the minority.

        • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

          You may be right-the votes for all of these polls have favored the legendary Celtics players far more than the most recent Cs!

          • guest

            Well Can you put the vote back out there for shooting guard? I think the people should get the chance to see the real vote, whether it is Sam Jones, Hondo or, Ray. Otherwise your pole isn’t legit.

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            It’s an interesting debate, but then people will say the poll isn’t legit because Hondo played at forward, too, especially early in his career. I can’t help the fact that he was capable of playing both, and besides, I still have to do a poll for who should be the Celtics sixth man, so Hondo will appear in one more poll!

          • guest

            OK, you are giving yourself a way out of this. But If you didn’t allow a 6th man vote, I’m pretty sure Hondo would have been voted started shooting guard over the others.
            Personally I would still put Hondo in as starting shooting guard and Dave Cowens would be the 6th man.

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            :D

            I appreciate your conviction, but come on: even the Boston Celtics very own website lists Havlicek at small forward: http://www.nba.com/celtics/history/legends/john-havlicek.html

            I’m not giving myself a way out; he was a hybrid, but is widely considered a small forward above all else.