Celtics

Happy 31st birthday, Larry Bird vs. Dominique Wilkins Game 7 duel

Happy 31st birthday, Larry Bird vs. Dominique Wilkins Game 7 duel

Thirty-one years ago today, the old Boston Garden was the site of one of the great superstar duels the NBA has ever seen.

Larry Bird vs. Dominque Wilkins. Celtics vs. Hawks. Eastern Conference Semifinal Game 7.

On a Sunday afternoon, in the first of a Garden playoff doubleheader (the Bruins and Edmonton Oilers would play Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final later that night), the two Hall of Famers staged a one-on-one battle to remember.

Bird and the Celtics came out on top, 118-116. Wilkins finished with 47 points - 12 in the fourth quarter - on 19-for-33 shooting. Bird had 20 of his 34 points in the fourth and was 15-for-24 for the game. And, in an ode to how different a game the NBA was then - each player only hit one 3-pointer. 

Tommy Heinsohn was the CBS analyst for the game with Brent Musburger doing the play-by-play. Former Celtics coach Doc Rivers was in Atlanta's backcourt. Heinsohn and Rivers looked back at the game with the voice of the Celtics.

Heinsohn: "Once it started to happen, you just saw the desire of both these players." 

Rivers: "The crowd here was amazing. I gotta tell you, I fell in love with the Celtic crowd in this game."

The Celtics would go on to lose to the Detroit Pistons in six games in the Eastern Conference Finals, but this game provided a lasting memory from that postseason.

Perhaps Musburger put it best after another late Bird drive and finish: "You are watching what greatness is all about."

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Bradley Beal reportedly a 'prime option' for Celtics; here's a possible trade package

Bradley Beal reportedly a 'prime option' for Celtics; here's a possible trade package

The Boston Celtics missed out on the big kahuna in Anthony Davis. But there are plenty of other fish in the NBA sea for president of basketball operations Danny Ainge to pursue.

Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal could be a "prime option" for Boston in a potential trade, "particularly if Kyrie Irving leaves" in free agency, The Athletic's Jordan Brenner reported Tuesday.

The two-time All-Star has two years remaining on his five-year deal with Washington and is set to make $27.1 million next season. If the Wizards decide to blow it up this offseason, Beal is their most valuable trade chip with John Wall still recovering from an Achilles injury, and the asset-rich Celtics could make them a tempting offer.

What might that offer entail? Here's Brenner:

One league source suggested that Washington would need to strongly consider an offer of Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart and a protected pick for Beal or that Boston could offer Smart, Jaylen Brown and two future first-rounders as an alternative trade.

Beal, who turns 26 later this month, has averaged at least 22 points in each of the last three seasons and is just entering his prime. But would the C's be willing to part with Tatum after he was a reported sticking point in talks surrounding Davis, one of the five best players in the NBA?

If Boston made that second offer of Smart, Brown and two first-rounders, it would pair two St. Louis natives in Beal and Tatum as the Celtics' young core of the future. Washington has been reluctant to even discuss a Wall or Beal trade in the past, though, and may hold out for more assets.

In any case, the C's appear willing to improve their roster via trade, and they're still in good position to do so with three first-round picks entering Thursday's 2019 NBA Draft.

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Scottie Pippen explains why Kyrie Irving should join Lakers

Scottie Pippen explains why Kyrie Irving should join Lakers

Kyrie Irving's free agency decision remains unclear amid reports he has "ghosted" the Boston Celtics' front office. Irving's most likely landing spot appears to be Brooklyn, but a reunion with LeBron James in Los Angeles isn't out of the question. 

Hall of Famer Scottie Pippen put himself in Irving's shoes Monday on ESPN's "The Jump" and had a clear destination in mind: Los Angeles.

"This is a great fit for Kyrie," Pippen said. "I think it's an opportunity for him to reunite with LeBron and get to the top of the NBA."

Irving signing with Los Angeles would leave the Lakers with little to no cap space, and ESPN's Dave McMenamin expressed concern about how the Lakers could fill out the rest of their roster after trading for Anthony Davis if they sign another star like Irving. But Pippen doubled down.

"I've seen LeBron go to the Finals, and I didn't know who the hell was in spots five-through-11, and he damn near won. We can't forget how dominant LeBron James is by himself, and I don't think he needs a whole lot of bench to help get to the next level."

Irving won one title with James in Cleveland. One more title for the Lakers would tie Boston's for the most NBA championships in franchise history.

Check out the full discussion here:

 

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