RIP Tommy Heinsohn

JohnnyTheBone

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May 28, 2007
19,588
Nobody Cares
Devastating news. Loved listening to Tommy so much, and was able to do so my entire life. Let the record show that Mr. Heinsohn never lost so much as a millimeter from his fastball. He was the best, right through his final broadcast. RIP.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Dec 24, 2002
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A legend as a player and broadcaster. Don Nelson has some great Tommy stories as do many others. Hopefully they are shared widely over the next few days.
 

JCizzle

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Dec 11, 2006
12,215
Wow, this really stings. You can’t fake the passion he brought to the team. He brought a lot of joy to my life and I hope he’s up there screaming at the refs for us. He and Mike made Celtics games a can’t miss experience for me growing up and into adulthood. RIP.
 
May 14, 2015
163
This is so disappointing. His voice is one of the few, like Sean McDonaugh, that always took me back to growing up in Boston no matter where I was located. I never cared about the homerism because he was our homer. RIP.
 

lostjumper

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Apr 27, 2009
1,210
Concord, NH
This is terrible! I loved listening to Tommy! He was a huge homer, but he was our homer. He loved the Celtics with a passion that few ever will come close to. RIP Tommy.
 

RedOctober3829

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Jul 19, 2005
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deep inside Guido territory
He is the living embodiment of Celtics pride. I grew up listening to him every game and I'm sure some on here grew up watching him play and then broadcast. He's the kindest, most selfless person. When I moved away from the area, any time that NBA TV picked up a Celtics broadcast with Mike and Tommy it brought a piece of home into my living room. He will forever be one of the two voices I will always associate Celtics basketball with.
 

reggiecleveland

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Mar 5, 2004
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Sad.
Loved his announcing.
I always wanted an option to pay 500 bucks to hear Tommy do a game uncensored

In one year the Celtics drafted Russell, Heinsohn, KC Jones. And as they say, that was it.
 

Pablo's TB Lover

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Sep 10, 2017
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Goddamn it, 2020 is a puss-filled suckbag. Why can't we lose more shitty people instead? I love Walter Tommy!
 

bankshot1

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Feb 12, 2003
19,360
where I was last at
this fucking year
He was pure Celtic.

player, coach and outrageous voice of partisan Celtic pride.

I'm tearing up on this one.

RIP and give em all Tommy!
 
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RGREELEY33

Potty Mouth
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Nov 28, 2005
4,401
Orange County, CA
Man, such a big part of my early teen years when I was super into hoops and the Celtics. . . . . and it continued to this day.

RIP Tommy. Celtics Forever.
 

BigSoxFan

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May 31, 2007
36,356
Oh Fuck you, 2020. RIP Tommy. Hope you’re reunited with the redhead from Needham.
 

cornwalls@6

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Apr 23, 2010
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Gut punch. Coached the first Celtic teams I remember rooting for. And loved him and Gorman on Sports Channel during the glory days of the 80s. Appointment viewing during my college years. Have drifted in and out following the team closely since then, but always loved his consistent passion for the Cs throughout the decades. RIP to an HOFer in every way.
 
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Van Everyman

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Apr 30, 2009
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Newton
Devastating news. Loved listening to Tommy so much, and was able to do so my entire life. Let the record show that Mr. Heinsohn never lost so much as a millimeter from his fastball. He was the best, right through his final broadcast. RIP.
I completely agree with this. He was tremendous, even this year before the pandemic when he didn't look great health-wise. And like KG, he bled green.
 

Light-Tower-Power

ask me about My Pillow
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Jun 14, 2013
10,411
Nashua, NH
My first memories of basketball consciousness revolve around the Antione Walker/Paul Pierce Celtics of the early 2000s, and the most vivid of those memories are of the voices of Mike Gorman and Tommy Heinsohn. I loved Walter, and I loved Tommy, and this one hurts.
 

CreightonGubanich

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Dec 13, 2006
1,115
north shore, MA
This sucks. I don't typically like the local broadcasters to be homers, but it was different with Tommy because it wasn't schtick. He just actually cared that much. As much as anybody with the possible exception of Red Auerbach, Tom Heinsohn was the Celtics.
 

McBride11

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Jul 15, 2005
15,710
Charleston, SC
Absolutely tragic. We knew Tommy' healthy was declining with as many games as he took off announcing, but this still sucks.

Whoever thought Holy Cross would produce 2 of the greatest Celtics ever.
 

trs

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Aug 19, 2010
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Madrid
This is horrible. I just hope they give him the announcing gig at the gates.
 

Kliq

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Mar 31, 2013
13,250
Shit.

To echo what everyone else has said above, nobody loved the Celtics more. Who else in professional sports could claim to have had some sort of a visible role in almost the entire existence of a pro sports league, one that dates back to post-WWII? After the shock-clock was introduced, whether it was as a player, coach or broadcaster, Tommy was there. Passion, humor, charisma and authenticity would how I would define Tommy. Who else could be a Hall of Fame player that won 8(!) championships, and then a Hall of Fame Coach that won two more titles, and yet on the day he died, everyone talks about him as a broadcaster. Hell, he was also the president of the Player's Union and a key figure in the early days of that organization helping pave the way to the luxuries players enjoy today.

Due to his post-playing career, people don't talk about how good of a player he was. The game has changed and his stats don't jump off the page, but he was the leading scorer on 3 Championship teams; only Mikan, Havlicek, Kareem, Bird, Jordan, Shaq, Duncan and LeBron can claim that. Everyone talks about rookie Magic Johnson's famous triple double to clinch the 1980 title for the Lakers; but what about rookie Tommy Heinsohn, going for 37&23 in Game 7 to beat the Hawks for the Celtics first title? His personality and humor was a necessary cog on a team full of stern professionals; Red rode him hard in practice and questioned his conditioning, and the Boston press mocked him by calling him Tommy Gun due to his selfish shot selection. Perhaps nobody in history was better equipped to play the role of jester, taking the heat from the media and coaches and shielding his more sensitive teammates.

In a game a few years ago against the heat, IT got red hot and hit a crazy dagger three against Miami. I said at the time that my goal in life is to live as long as Tommy and still having something make me as happy as he was when IT cashed that shot.:

View: https://youtu.be/W4K7nKW6sDg?t=222
 

Minneapolis Millers

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Jul 15, 2005
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Coach of the first C’s championship squad that I remember watching as a kid (75/76). Does anyone else remember his quirky way of calling time-outs, using just his index fingers instead of both hands? Or is my memory making that up?

All time great. I was thinking just a week or two ago about the top 10 people (not just players) in the Celtic hierarchy, and Heinsohn definitely made my list. RIP.
 

djbayko

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Jul 18, 2005
13,906
Waltham, MA
Oh no. I very rarely post in death threads, but this one....shit. I grew up watching Celtics games with my dad. Heinson was a fan’s announcer. Yes, he was the biggest homer imaginable, and that’s exactly what I wanted. He was in my living room telling me it was okay to be livid about that last foul call. It won’t be the same watching Celtics games without him around.
 
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jose melendez

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Oct 23, 2003
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I hadn't heard him in a long time, but the guy is iconic as a voice of the Celtics, second only to Johnny Most (sorry Mike) and that doesn't even get to his brilliance on the court and as a coach.
 

djbayko

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Jul 18, 2005
13,906
Waltham, MA
I wish someone would put together a collection of him going ballistic over calls/non-calls/dirty plays. I’ve looked on YouTube in the past and there’s a relative dearth of this material, considering how much he’s generated over the years.
 

Jed Zeppelin

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Aug 23, 2008
39,354
In honor of Tommy, I thought it would be therapeutic to put together an All-Tommy Team of Celtics who were going to be truly great some day:

PG: Milt Palacio, Orien Greene, Sebastian Telfair
SG: Ricky Davis, Jiri Welsch
SF: Jeff Green, Kedrick Brown, Adrian Griffin
PF: Walter McCarty (captain), Brian Scalabrine (co-captain)
C: Vitaly Potapenko, Greg Stiemsma

Coach: Ryan Gomes