Four decades before the "Big Three" of Paul Pierce, Kevi Garnett and Ray Allen united in Boston, a different trio of Celtics stars was dominating opponents.

We're talking about John Havlicek, Bill Russell and Don Nelson, who were historically great exactly 52 years ago on this date.

In Game 5 of the 1968 NBA Finals on April 30, 1968, Havlicek, Russell and Nelson each posted at least 22 points, 10 rebounds and four assists — the first and only time that three Celtics accomplished that feat in the same playoff game.

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Here were there final stat lines:

Havlicek: 31 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists
Russell: 22 points, 25 rebounds, six assists
Nelson: 26 points, 12 rebounds, four assists

That record still stands to this day.

More importantly, their efforts powered the Celtics to a thrilling 120-117 overtime win over the Los Angeles Lakers to give Boston a 3-2 series lead. The C's then won Game 6 to capture their 10th NBA championship.

Here are a few other notable April 30 performances from the C's, who are 8-5 all-time in games played on this date:

April 30, 2018: Speaking of successful trios ... Terry Rozier (29 points), Jayson Tatum (28 points) and Al Horford (26 points) lead the Celtics to an Eastern Conference Semifinal Game 1 win over the Philadelphia 76ers, becoming the first three Celtics players to tally at least 26 points in the same playoff game since 1987.

April 30, 1985: Larry Bird silences the "Bad Boy" Detroit Pistons, racking up 42 points, 10 rebounds and six assists in Boston's 121-114 win in Game 2 of their second-round matchup.


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