Saturday, October 28, 2006

Red Auerbach

The legendary Boston Celtic head coach has passed away after a heart attack at the age of 89. Red Auerbach, whom the NBA's Coach of the Year trophy is named after, was a pioneer in the NBA's early years, tied with Phil Jackson for nine championships as a head coach. Auerbach was famous for lighting up his charismatic "victory cigar" in the fourth quarter when Boston had the game won. His eight straight titles from 1959 to 1966 may forever stand as the greatest sports dynasty in all of sports. NBA commissioner David Stern summed up Red's influence declaring, "The NBA wouldn’t be what it is today without him.”

As general manager and then president, the Celtics went on to win seven more titles in the 1970s and 1980s. Auerbach is credited for drafting Bill Russell, Larry Bird, and Kevin McHale, as well as acquiring Dennis Johnson, Danny Ainge, and Robert Parrish.

I can only pray that Red had Christian faith.