Since their formation back in 1946, the Boston Celtics have consistently been one of the best teams basketball has to offer. These past 20 years have been no different than the previous 54.
Over the years, the Boston Celtics have been synonymous with one word: winning. Over their 74 year lifespan the C’s have accumulated 22 division titles, 21 conference titles, 17 World Championships and more retired jersey numbers than you can count — ok, 22 but, hey, that’s still a crazy number.
Though they may not always make the league’s second season — otherwise known as the playoffs — their 56 appearances prior to this year is a true indicator that, more often than not, they’re there (76 percent of the time).
Now, with Tuesday’s victory over the surging Indiana Pacers, the shamrocks are officially postseason bound for the 57th time, ranking them just behind the Los Angeles Lakers (61) for the most playoff seasons for a team in NBA history.
Year in and year out, the Boston Celtics are always seen as a threat to take home the Larry O’brien trophy and stretch out their league leading championship total to 18. Though their last title was attained over a decade ago, since the turn of the century Boston has been one of the most consistently successful organizations in the league.
Prior to the start of this season, Beantown has managed to reach the postseason 15 times. Only five of those appearances were halted by a first-round exit while six of them saw Eastern Conference Finals berths, two NBA Finals berths and, in 2008, an NBA Championship.
With 2019-20 being yet another playoff clinching season, the Celtics have stretched their postseason campaigns to 16 over the past 20 years, ranking them second among all other teams during that span.
Most playoff appearances over the last 20 years:
- San Antonio Spurs — 19
- Boston Celtics — 16
- Dallas Mavericks — 15 (will be 16 once they officially clinch a playoff berth)
- Indiana Pacers — 14 (will be 15 once they officially clinch a playoff berth)
- Miami Heat — 13 (will be 14 once they officially clinch a playoff berth)
This, of course, is not bad company to be intertwined with. The Gregg Popovich/ Tim Duncan led Spurs being the only other team ahead of the C’s should come as no surprise, as they’ve won four titles during this span and, though three of the seasons came prior to 2000-01, were in the midst of the longest postseason streak in league history (22).
The Boston Celtics are the winningest franchise the NBA has ever seen. Over the past two decades, they’ve managed to keep this reputation going by reaching the postseason 80 percent of the time.
Moving forward with their current core of Kemba Walker, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Gordon Hayward and Marcus Smart, their winning ways should only continue on. Hopefully they’ll be able to raise a few more banners and retired numbers to the rafters through the decades still to come.