Best Celtic to Never win a ring in Boston

jose melendez

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I did this thread years ago, but for the last few it's obviously been the Js. No more.

So who is it now? Reggie, Antoine, McCauley were the classics--I imagine Marcus is in the picture now too.

Whatever. Basically every great player in Cs history has gotten a ring in Boston. It's really unusual. Even with all of the MFY success, they have some greats (Mattingly) with no rings.
 

Oil Can Dan

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Don’t know if he’s the best, and maybe this is recency bias, but I vote for Marcus because he really seemed to love being a Celtic. I’m so happy we won but I feel a little bad for him.
 

luckiestman

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Don’t know if he’s the best, and maybe this is recency bias, but I vote for Marcus because he really seemed to love being a Celtic. I’m so happy we won but I feel a little bad for him.
Marcus is the one I’m most sad about (excluding Reggie, of course, but that’s different).
 

jose melendez

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Reggie was only an All-Star once, Antoine twice, and Marcus was never an all-start but was DPOY and three time first team all D. Marcus also had nine years with the Cs compared to Antoine's 8.

Reggie probably was the best player of those three, but what actually happened matters. I'm kind of coming around on Marcus in the modern era.

Ed Macauley seems pretty decisively the guy all-time.
 

TomRicardo

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Dominique Wilkins.

I think Reggie Lewis has the most career WAR as a Celtics then maybe Marcus Smart.
 

Eddie Jurak

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If we're thinking about rings with the Celtics and players who have played significant time with the team, I think minutes played with the Celtics is a useful though imperfect approximation of value:

1. Antoine Walker, 8 seasons and 21,654 minutes
2. Marcus Smart, 9 seasons and 17,441 minutes
3. Reggie Lewis, 6 seasons and 14,676 minutes
4. Dee Brown, 8 seasons and 13,665 minutes
5. Ed Macauley, 6 seasons, 13,385 minutes
6. Eric Williams, 7 seasons, 11,638 minutes
7. Avery Bradley, 7 seasons, 11,619 minutes
8. Rick Fox, 6 seasons, 10,990 minutes
9. Kevin Gamble, 6 seasons, 10,998 minutes
10. Walter McCarty, 8 seasons, 9,476 minutes
 

bankshot1

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If we're thinking about rings with the Celtics and players who have played significant time with the team, I think minutes played with the Celtics is a useful though imperfect approximation of value:

1. Antoine Walker, 8 seasons and 21,654 minutes
2. Marcus Smart, 9 seasons and 17,441 minutes
3. Reggie Lewis, 6 seasons and 14,676 minutes
4. Dee Brown, 8 seasons and 13,665 minutes
5. Ed Macauley, 6 seasons, 13,385 minutes
6. Eric Williams, 7 seasons, 11,638 minutes
7. Avery Bradley, 7 seasons, 11,619 minutes
8. Rick Fox, 6 seasons, 10,990 minutes
9. Kevin Gamble, 6 seasons, 10,998 minutes
10. Walter McCarty, 8 seasons, 9,476 minutes
I was thinking Walker or Smart and using time played as valuation screen but too lazy to do the homework.

I was never a big Walker fan, but was a Smart guy.

Good job.
 

lexrageorge

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If we're thinking about rings with the Celtics and players who have played significant time with the team, I think minutes played with the Celtics is a useful though imperfect approximation of value:

1. Antoine Walker, 8 seasons and 21,654 minutes
2. Marcus Smart, 9 seasons and 17,441 minutes
3. Reggie Lewis, 6 seasons and 14,676 minutes
4. Dee Brown, 8 seasons and 13,665 minutes
5. Ed Macauley, 6 seasons, 13,385 minutes
6. Eric Williams, 7 seasons, 11,638 minutes
7. Avery Bradley, 7 seasons, 11,619 minutes
8. Rick Fox, 6 seasons, 10,990 minutes
9. Kevin Gamble, 6 seasons, 10,998 minutes
10. Walter McCarty, 8 seasons, 9,476 minutes
In Eric Williams case, a good approximation for the subtraction of value
 

HurstSoGood

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Who had the single best season? The little guy got MVP votes I think.
IT4? He was really good for us. Unfortunately, also hampered by injuries thru most of his career. But had some great performances for sure.
 

Eddie Jurak

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I was thinking Walker or Smart and using time played as valuation screen but too lazy to do the homework.
Yes.

On that list, there are 4 guys I'd say are "in the conversation." Walker, Smart, Lewis, Macauley. If I added a fifth, it would be Bradley, but for me he is way below the others. And think I would choose Smart, though it would have to be Macauley if we considered the return in trade.
 

snowmanny

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End of their careers obviously, but would love to have seen Pistol Pete get one, or Dave Bing for that matter.
Dave Bing left the eventual champion to come to Boston. Maybe the Bullets didn’t want him back, not sure.
 

gammoseditor

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I think it’s IT. Despite being here 5 more seasons Antoine only has one more all star game appearance. Walker never made an all-nba team. IT was second team all-nba and finished 5th in the MVP voting.
 

Devizier

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I mean, it’s Ed Macauley, Seven time allstar, including six in Boston. Three times as first team all-NBA. There’s a reason St. Louis traded for him.
 

Al Zarilla

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I mean, it’s Ed Macauley, Seven time allstar, including six in Boston. Three times as first team all-NBA. There’s a reason St. Louis traded for him.
Too soft, too skinny. He played with Cousy and Sharman, two very legit HOFers and they couldn’t even get to a finals. Of course he was what he was because probably no basketball player lifted a weight back then.
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kfoss99

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It's pretty remarkable that we're talking about guys like Ed Macauley and Marcus Smart. A lot of teams have legit Hall of Famers that never won a ring. The Lakers have Elgin Baylor. The Warriors have Chris Mullin. The Knicks have...nearly everyone.
 

Justthetippett

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I think it’s IT. Despite being here 5 more seasons Antoine only has one more all star game appearance. Walker never made an all-nba team. IT was second team all-nba and finished 5th in the MVP voting.
IT is welcome to come back, be the microwave second unit guy in the regular season dog days and get a ring in 2025. He won't get the Brink's truck but we can offer him a nice epilogue to his career.
 

Al Zarilla

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It's pretty remarkable that we're talking about guys like Ed Macauley and Marcus Smart. A lot of teams have legit Hall of Famers that never won a ring. The Lakers have Elgin Baylor. The Warriors have Chris Mullin. The Knicks have...nearly everyone.
Stretching it out to two other major sports: Ted Williams (sigh), Barry Bonds, Dan Marino.
 

Kliq

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It's Macauley by a long shot. Macauley was one of the best players in the entire NBA for years and was three-time first team NBA, and arguably the best player on the Celtics with Cousy. The team had a ceiling though after years of getting punched out in the playoffs, and Red did a pretty radical thing by trading Macauley for the pick that would become Russell, drastically shaking up the making of the team, further empowering Cousy on offense, and creating space for another rookie in Tommy Heinsohn to play at forward.

The Hawks traded away one of the two best players in NBA History and the ultimate winner in Bill Russell, yet nobody really talks about it as a heist. Part of that reason is Macauley was that good of a player, and he did immediately help the Hawks reach the Finals that season and then win the Finals the year after that.
 

Al Zarilla

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It's Macauley by a long shot. Macauley was one of the best players in the entire NBA for years and was three-time first team NBA, and arguably the best player on the Celtics with Cousy. The team had a ceiling though after years of getting punched out in the playoffs, and Red did a pretty radical thing by trading Macauley for the pick that would become Russell, drastically shaking up the making of the team, further empowering Cousy on offense, and creating space for another rookie in Tommy Heinsohn to play at forward.

The Hawks traded away one of the two best players in NBA History and the ultimate winner in Bill Russell, yet nobody really talks about it as a heist. Part of that reason is Macauley was that good of a player, and he did immediately help the Hawks reach the Finals that season and then win the Finals the year after that.
Maybe it was Macauley, but one reason you have to come down to him is that the Celtics won in practically all eras, all decades (after Russell was “obtained”) so all great players won at least one. How about Antoine Walker though? Another thing about Macauley, if you turn it around and say the Celtics never traded him, for Russell, they probably never win a title until who knows when? The Cowens era? When the Hawks won the title in 1958, it was mostly Bob Pettit and Cliff Hagan, and even the guards (Slater Martin and Jack McMahon) who were more important than Macauley. Biggest factor of all though is that Russell was hurt.
 

chilidawg

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If we're thinking about rings with the Celtics and players who have played significant time with the team, I think minutes played with the Celtics is a useful though imperfect approximation of value:

1. Antoine Walker, 8 seasons and 21,654 minutes
2. Marcus Smart, 9 seasons and 17,441 minutes
3. Reggie Lewis, 6 seasons and 14,676 minutes
4. Dee Brown, 8 seasons and 13,665 minutes
5. Ed Macauley, 6 seasons, 13,385 minutes
6. Eric Williams, 7 seasons, 11,638 minutes
7. Avery Bradley, 7 seasons, 11,619 minutes
8. Rick Fox, 6 seasons, 10,990 minutes
9. Kevin Gamble, 6 seasons, 10,998 minutes
10. Walter McCarty, 8 seasons, 9,476 minutes
I love Waltah!
 

Devizier

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It's pretty remarkable that we're talking about guys like Ed Macauley and Marcus Smart. A lot of teams have legit Hall of Famers that never won a ring. The Lakers have Elgin Baylor. The Warriors have Chris Mullin. The Knicks have...nearly everyone.
I mean, Ed Macauley was probably better than Mullin (Nate Thurmond was probably the best of the Warriors).
 

InstaFace

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IT is welcome to come back, be the microwave second unit guy in the regular season dog days and get a ring in 2025. He won't get the Brink's truck but we can offer him a nice epilogue to his career.
I feel like we have the 10-years-younger version of that - shrimpy microwave PG who can shoot - with an added bonus of some end-of-quarter heaves.

Maybe if he'd take a 2-way deal that leaves him some nostalgic end-of-game cameos, have him put the real work in in Maine mentoring the Gs, and earn his ring by staying ready and being a good locker room guy. I'd be down with that. But he really doesn't have a spot on the big roster at this point.

edit: nope, you can't take a two-way deal if you have more than 3 years of NBA service time. Huh. Even when both sides would be willing. Strange rule, but I guess that solution is out. Either IT4 is the 15th guy on the roster, and only sees the court if he's the one guy who skips the team outing for questionable sushi, or he's only coming back in street clothes.
 

scottyno

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IT is welcome to come back, be the microwave second unit guy in the regular season dog days and get a ring in 2025. He won't get the Brink's truck but we can offer him a nice epilogue to his career.
That's what Phoenix fans thought they were getting this year for some reason, and then he couldn't even get on the court, so no. Unless you mean a ring for the Maine Celtics, he would set G League records if he played a full season down there.
 

NomarsFool

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It's pretty remarkable that we're talking about guys like Ed Macauley and Marcus Smart. A lot of teams have legit Hall of Famers that never won a ring. The Lakers have Elgin Baylor. The Warriors have Chris Mullin. The Knicks have...nearly everyone.
It is remarkable. Maybe it's a function of the sport, in that in basketball it's easier for an individual great player to lead his team to a championship than in baseball, football, or hockey. It's also an amazing situation that we have won so many championships in Boston over the last 20+ years. Most of the hard-luck guys are people we don't really remember because they are before some of our times.