Re: Some historical perspective
posted at 8/6/2010 6:40 PM EDT
In Response to Some historical perspective
[QUOTE]After the Celtics lost to the Lakers in the Finals for the 3 rd time in the last 4 meetings, and having only 1 championship since 1986, I’ve seen many discussions on this site about Celtics fans claiming the Cs are still the best due to all their historical achievements. And certainly Gerald, Raymond, Walter, and all their friends born in 1950 or earlier have witnessed much to be proud of, but I offer some additional historical perspective. 9 of Boston’s 17 championships (including 8 straight) came by 1966, when the NBA had 8 or 9 teams. Then 3 more from 1966- 1974 as the league expanded to 18 teams. Then 4 from 1974 - 1986, and 1 since that time. Basically, as the League grew and became more accessible to minorities, and later players from overseas, the Celtics early “dominance” dwindled. Some might say that the current NBA is a little watered down with 30 teams, but many NBA fans see the 1980s as the most competitive and popular era of the League, and it had 22 teams for much of that period. To the extent the current NBA might be watered down, the NBA’s early era was equally void of competition. Playing the same teams over and over required less creativity and adjustments, and fewer games in the playoffs made it easier for the better teams to advance to the Finals. 10 of the Lakers 16 championships have come in the era of the expanded NBA and the 3 point shot. Many Cs fans are quick to observe the Celtics finals record of 17-4, versus the Lakers finals record of 16-15. 10 other years the Cs lost in the Eastern conference finals. The Lakers have lost in the Western conference finals 6 times. So when reaching the conference finals, the Cs move on 67% of the time, versus 84% for the Lakers. Due to a 20 year famine, the Celtics have also missed the playoffs many more times than the Lakers. In sum, as the League has evolved, the Lakers have flourished and continue to make history, while the Cs are history.
Posted by MrvAlbertsBra[/QUOTE]
Bottom line is that every team had the same opportunities to be successful, whether there were 8 teams, 18, or 30. If the C's weren't the best team then they wouldn't have won a ring. To say that the number of teams was more advantageous to Boston than LA is garbage. A championship is a championship. If adjustments were so easily made, then why didn't LA make them during the NBA's early days?
Moreover, the C's fall from the top was filled with unfortunate events such as the deaths Len Bias and Reggie Lewis. Obviously it's speculation to say that the C's would've been contenders if they hadn't died, but these happenings were a huge piece of Boston's woeful years. It had nothing to do with the number of teams in the league.
It's just absolutely bogus to say that the C's won so many titles because adjustments and a lack of creativity due to a small number of teams was the reason. Doesn't make any sense.