Houston Rockets

This Date In Celtics History: C's win 1981 NBA title to spark dominant decade

This Date In Celtics History: C's win 1981 NBA title to spark dominant decade

On this date 39 years ago, Larry Bird added "NBA champion" to his resume.

The Boston Celtics hadn't won a title in four years (a long drought for them at the time) entering the 1981 NBA Finals against the Houston Rockets.

But with the series tied at 2-2, Rockets star Moses Malone gave the C's some bulletin board material, boasting that he could get "four guys off the street" to beat Boston.

Download the MyTeams app for the latest Celtics news and analysis

That was all the motivation the Celtics needed. On May 14, 1981, they went into Houston and battled to a 102-91 win in Game 6, with Bird posting a game-high 27 points and 13 rebounds to capture his first NBA title.

That victory was the first of three championships in the 1980s for the Celtics, who reached the NBA Finals five times in a span of seven years during a dominant decade.

Here are two other notable May 14 performances from the C's, who are 4-3 all-time in games played on this date:

May 14, 2008: Paul Pierce (29 points), Kevin Garnett (26 points) and Rajon Rondo (20 points) combine to push the Cleveland Cavaliers to the brink in the Eastern Conference Semifinals with a Game 6 victory.

May 13, 1985: Bird gets help from Kevin McHale (22 points, 11 rebounds) and Dennis Johnson (22 points, seven assists) as the Celtics jump out to a 2-0 series lead of the Philadelphia 76ers in the East Semifinals.

Classic Celtics: Larry Bird lifts C's over Rockets in 1986 NBA Finals clincher

Classic Celtics: Larry Bird lifts C's over Rockets in 1986 NBA Finals clincher

Some consider the 1986 Boston Celtics one of the greatest NBA teams of all time.

Here's your chance to watch them finish off that historic season.

NBC Sports Boston's "Classic Celtics" series -- which brought you Kemba Walker's 32-point outburst against the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday -- rolls on Friday with Game 6 of the 1986 NBA Finals between the Celtics and Houston Rockets.

Download the MyTeams app for the latest Celtics news and analysis

The Rockets took Game 5 in Houston to send the series back to Boston, but they weren't prepared for Larry Bird, whose magnificent performance in Game 6 (29 points, 11 rebounds, 12 assists) helped the C's earn a 114-97 win and clinch their 16th NBA championship.

Our re-broadcast of Celtics-Rockets airs Friday at 7 p.m. ET, and if watching Bird at the height of his powers wasn't entertaining enough, former Celtics center Bill Walton will join Brian Scalabrine throughout the night to provide color commentary.

Here's when and how to watch:

When: Friday, April 3, 7 p.m. ET
TV: NBC Sports Boston
Streaming: NBCSportsBoston.com and in the MyTeams app

Click here to listen and subscribe to the Celtics Talk Podcast:

Celtics' Jaylen Brown drills 3 at buzzer to force OT vs. Rockets

jaylen_brown.jpg
File photo

Celtics' Jaylen Brown drills 3 at buzzer to force OT vs. Rockets

Jaylen Brown didn't let the Boston Celtics go down easily on Saturday night.

After Jayson Tatum intentionally missed a free throw, Brown drained the buzzer-beater 3 to tie the game at 104 and send it to overtime.

Watch below:


LIVE stream the Celtics all season and get the latest news and analysis on all of your teams from NBC Sports Boston by downloading the My Teams App.

Unfortunately for Brown and the C's, they went on to fall in OT, 111-110. Still, it was a thrilling way to cap off regulation as Boston fought tooth and nail to keep Houston from pulling away.

Brown finished with 22 points on the night. The Celtics now are 41-18 on the season.

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Nets-Celtics, which begins Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live. You can also stream on the MyTeams App.