Thank You, Hondo

TripleOT

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SoSH Member
Jul 4, 2007
1,839
Great defender at three positions-- maybe the greatest of all time in that role. He scored nearly 27,000 points but I never saw him dunk the ball once, not even in warmups.
IIRC, his first bucket as a pro was a dunk, the only dunk of his career. i distinctly remember his last game, the 31 win Cs and the 27 win Buffalo Braves playing out the string, and one of the story lines was whether Hondo would dunk his last bucket.

Providence legend Ernie DiGregorio was dusted off the Celtics' bench to feed the ball to Hondo over and over, and Havlicek ended his career at age 37 by putting up 29 points as the Celtics dropped 73 second half points on the Braves for the win.

It was also the last game for Ernie D, finished at age 27. He never fully recovered from a knee operation the season after winning ROY with the Braves in 1974.
 

Big John

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Dec 9, 2016
1,551
Those Braves teams with McAdoo, McMillan, DeGregorio and the underrated Randy Smith could really score. Gar Heard was also on that team until they traded him to Phoenix.
 

joe dokes

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SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
12,678
Bob Cousy never disappoints:

https://www.bostonglobe.com/sports/celtics/2019/05/23/john-havlicek-tribute-celebrates-champion-sport-and-life/5AFOuTCRoV5uxDrOM29GgP/story.html
(edited to include only Cooz's rmarks):

Walking with the aid of a cane, Cousy approached the altar and spoke after the reading of the gospel.
“At 90, you have difficulty remembering what you’d like to say,’’ started Cousy. “And even when you type larger, you have trouble reading at times . . . John was a complex man in some ways and in other ways a simple and transparent one . . . I could be wrong, but I think John was not completely comfortable with his celebrity status.
“However, I think he utilized that celebrity very well. He used it to reach out and help others.
“My old Jesuit mentor at Holy Cross many years ago, when asked the eternal question — ‘What’s it all about? Why are we here?’ — would reply that basically what God requires of you is that you maximize whatever God-given talents you are blessed with to reach out to your communities and help in any way you are able those who are less fortunate, who need a boost.
“John personified this attitude. And along with that, he was a loving, responsible husband and father.’’
Cousy then spoke of Havlicek’s 34-year Cape Cod charity fishing weekend for the benefit of the Genesis Fund, and teased, “I used to tell John, ‘You know, this would be a great, great weekend if you just got rid of the fishing.’
“In an effort to make this a celebratory moment, let me remind you that John was a world-class athlete who played 16 years — half of those championship years. He was part of an era that started in 1957 and continued until 1969 in which 11 championships were won in a 13-year period.
“That had never been done before and it will never be replicated. Truly unbelievable. And it gives New England sports fans something forever.
“John embedded himself into the New England sports world and into the hearts of every sports fan when he stole the ball.’’
A somber Cousy concluded his remarks with a reference to his own retirement ceremony in 1963 when an MDC water division worker named Joe Dillon broke the teary silence at the sold-out Garden, bellowing, “We love ya, Cooz!’’ from the balcony.
“Today I’m pleased to close the circle and use a quote from my own memory book,’’ Cousy said, choking back tears.
“We love you, Hondo. Rest in peace.’’