Notable winners of the Tommy Award over the years
Since its debut during the 2001-02 season, the Tommy Award has seen 144 different recipients.
Paul Pierce sits atop the list with 139 honors but there’s also been a whopping 43 single-victory recipients over the course of the honor — and some of them weren’t even on the court to earn it.
Here’s a look back at some of the more notable winners in Tommy Award history.
Nobody has won more Tommy Awards over the years than Paul Pierce. His 139 such honors are the clear leader, and not all of them came with him in a Celtics uniform. Pierce won his final two Tommy Awards in February 2017, when he nailed a late three-pointer in his final trip to Boston as a member of the Clippers, and in February 2018, when his number 34 was raised to the rafters.
Rajon Rondo is the only other player who has cracked triple digits, racking up an even 100 Tommy Awards. Here's the Top 10 before we get to some people at the bottom of the leaderboard.
1. Paul Pierce - 139
2. Rajon Rondo - 100
3. Kevin Garnett - 56
4. Marcus Smart - 54
5. Ray Allen - 50
6. Tony Allen - 45
7. Kyrie Irving - 42
8. Avery Bradley, Jaylen Brown - 40
10. Isaiah Thomas - 36
March 13, 2002
In what is the first official Tommy Award on record, the Ukraine Train elevated to a starting role and grabbed 12 rebounds over 32 minutes to snag the honor in a 97-89 triumph at the FleetCenter.
It would be Potapenko’s lone Tommy Award before being dealt to Seattle in the Vin Baker deal four months later.
October 29, 2003
In the most Mark Blount of games, the 7-footer had as many blocks (4) as he did points (2) and rebounds (2) combined while playing 18 minutes as a starter.
That was enough to earn him the first of an improbable 22 Tommy Awards while the Celtics breezed to an opening-night win over the Heat.
February 21, 2004
The Celtics played three games on the road before the All-Star break in 2004, then opened up with a four-game trip out west, where they got swept and things got real silly with the Tommy Award.
As the Celtics endured a 105-84 thumping from the Trail Blazers on a Saturday night in Portland, Gorman earned his first and only Tommy Award (though Heinsohn contends he deserves the honor each night for putting up with him).
Seattle Fish Guys
February 22, 2004
On the second night of a back-to-back to close out that same arduous west coast trip, the Celtics got blasted by 21 in Seattle.
The Tommy Award went to the fish tossers at Pike Place Fish Market since no Celtics player deserved acclaim on that trip.
March 5, 2004
Continuing the trend of outside-the-box Tommy Award winners during an otherwise maddening 2003-04 season, Heinsohn himself took home his lone honor during Boston’s 94-90 triumph over the Wizards.
Ricky Davis, with 17 points off the bench, earns the tough snub.
Fan with a sign
March 12, 2004
As the Celtics fell nine games under .500 while absorbing a 99-81 loss to the Pacers in Boston, a fan with a sign was about the lone bright spot and he got the Tommy Award for his efforts.
January 18, 2007
The Celtics dropped their sixth straight on what would grow to be a franchise record 18-game losing streak.
On this night, a 96-91 loss to the Sacramento Kings, the Celtics still got 16,019 fans to come out and they earned the Tommy Award for their diligence.
The 1957 team
April 13, 2007
The Celtics celebrated the 50th anniversary of the 1957 team during a 104-102 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks.
With Bill Russell, Bob Cousy, Jim Loscutoff, and Bill Sharman in attendance, Heinsohn honored his former teammates with the Tommy Award.
November 2, 2007
In his first night in green, Garnett took home his first of 56 Tommy Awards, which ranks him third all-time.
Garnett would finish with a team-best 14 Tommy Awards for the season.
January 7, 2011
The month before he got shipped out of town, Harangody, the 52nd pick in the 2010 draft, erupted for 17 points on 8-of-11 shooting over 27 minutes off the bench in a 122-102 triumph over the Raptors.
It was hands down his best game in green.
December 22, 2013
In Brad Stevens’ first season at the helm, the Celtics played their final game before Christmas in Indiana and got thumped by 27 points.
With no Celtics player scoring over 13 points — and only three guys in double figures — the Tommy Award went to Santa Claus as he geared up for his Christmas deliveries.