1986–87 Boston Celtics season

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1986–87 Boston Celtics season
Eastern Conference Champions
Head coach K. C. Jones
Owner(s) Don Gaston, Alan N. Cohen, Paul Dupee
Arena Boston Garden
Hartford Civic Center
Results
Record 59–23 (.720)
Place Division: 1st (Atlantic)
Conference: 1st (Eastern)
Playoff finish NBA Finals(Eliminated 2–4)

Stats @ Basketball-Reference.com
Local media
Television SportsChannel New England, WLVI, WTXX
Radio WRKO, WTIC
< 1985–86 1987–88 >

NBA Draft[edit]

Thanks to the 1984 trade of Gerald Henderson and the subsequent fall of the Seattle SuperSonics, at the end of the 1985-86 the Celtics owned not only the best team in the NBA but also the second pick in the 1986 NBA Draft. The Celtics drafted Len Bias with the pick and had high hopes for the young University of Maryland star. Fans believed Bias had superstar potential, and that he would be the perfect complement to the aging, but still strong, Celtics. The hope was that his presence would ensure that the franchise would remain a powerhouse after Bird, McHale and Parish retired. Unfortunately, Bias died 48 hours after he was drafted, after using cocaine at a party and overdosing. It would be the first in a long string of bad luck for the Celtics.

Round Pick Player Position Nationality School/Club Team
1 2 Len Bias Forward  United States Maryland
4 93 Tony Bedford N/A  United States Texas Tech
5 116 Dave Colbert N/A  United States Dayton
6 139 Greg Wendt N/A  United States Detroit
7 162 Tom Ivey N/A  United States Boston

Regular season[edit]

Season standings[edit]

Atlantic Division W L PCT GB Home Road Div
y-Boston Celtics 59 23 .720 39–2 20–21 15–9
x-Philadelphia 76ers 45 37 .549 14 28–13 17–24 12–12
x-Washington Bullets 42 40 .512 17 27–14 15–26 13–11
New Jersey Nets 24 58 .293 35 19–22 5–36 12–12
New York Knicks 24 58 .293 35 18–23 6–35 8–16


Game Log[edit]

1986-87 Game Log
1986-87 Schedule

Roster[edit]

Boston Celtics roster
Players Coaches
Pos. # Nat. Name Height Weight DOB (YYYY–MM–DD) From
G/F 44 United States Ainge, Danny 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 175 lb (79 kg) 1959–03–17 Brigham Young
F 33 United States Bird, Larry (C) 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1956–12–07 Indiana State University
G 34 United States Carlisle, Rick 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1959–10–27 Virginia
G/F 20 United States Daye, Darren 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1960–11–30 UCLA
G 43 United States Henry, Conner 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 1963–07–21 UC Santa Barbara
G 3 United States Johnson, Dennis 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 185 lb (84 kg) 1954–09–18 Pepperdine
C 50 United States Kite, Greg 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m) 250 lb (113 kg) 1961–08–05 Brigham Young
F/C 32 United States McHale, Kevin 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1957–12–19 Minnesota
C 00 United States Parish, Robert 7 ft 0 in (2.13 m) 230 lb (104 kg) 1953–08–30 Centenary College of Louisiana
F/C 31 United States Roberts, Fred 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 218 lb (99 kg) 1960–08–10 Brigham Young
G 12 United States Sichting, Jerry 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) 168 lb (76 kg) 1956–11–29 Purdue
F 45 United States Thirdkill, David (waived) 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 1960–04–12 Bradley
G 7 United States Turner, Andre (waived) 5 ft 11 in (1.8 m) 160 lb (73 kg) 1964–12–13 Memphis
G 11 United States Vincent, Sam 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) 185 lb (84 kg) 1963–05–18 Michigan State
C 5 United States Walton, Bill 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m) 235 lb (107 kg) 1952–11–05 UCLA
G 8 United States Wedman, Scott 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1952–07–29 Colorado
Head coach
Assistant coach(es)



Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Unsigned draft pick
  • (FA) Free agent
  • (S) Suspended
  • Injured Injured

Roster

[1]

Depth chart[edit]

Pos. Starter Bench Reserve Inactive
C Robert Parish Greg Kite
Bill Walton
PF Kevin McHale Fred Roberts
SF Larry Bird Darren Daye Scott Wedman Injured
SG Danny Ainge Conner Henry Rick Carlisle
PG Dennis Johnson Jerry Sichting Sam Vincent

Player stats[edit]

Note: GP= Games played; REB= Rebounds; AST= Assists; STL = Steals; BLK = Blocks; PTS = Points; AVG = Scoring Average

Player GP REB AST STL BLK PTS AVG
Larry Bird 74 682 566 135 70 2076 28.1
Kevin McHale 77 763 198 38 172 2008 26.1
Robert Parish 80 851 173 64 144 1403 17.5
Dennis Johnson 79 261 594 87 38 1062 13.4
Danny Ainge 71 242 400 101 14 1053 14.8
Jerry Sichting 78 91 187 40 1 448 5.7
Fred Roberts 73 190 62 22 20 402 5.5
Darren Daye 61 124 75 25 7 236 3.9
Sam Vincent 46 27 59 13 1 171 3.7
Greg Kite 74 169 27 17 46 123 1.7
Conner Henry 36 27 27 6 1 98 2.7
Rick Carlisle 42 30 35 8 0 80 1.9
Bill Walton 10 31 9 1 10 28 2.8
David Thirdkill 17 19 2 2 0 25 1.5
Scott Wedman 6 9 6 2 2 20 3.3
Andre Turner 3 2 1 0 0 4 1.3

Playoffs[edit]

East First Round[edit]

(1) Boston Celtics vs. (8) Chicago Bulls: Celtics win series 3-0

  • Game 1 @ Boston: Boston 108, Chicago 104
  • Game 2 @ Boston: Boston 105, Chicago 96
  • Game 3 @ Chicago: Boston 105, Chicago 94

East Conference Semifinals[edit]

(1) Boston Celtics vs. (4) Milwaukee Bucks Celtics win series 4-3

  • Game 1 @ Boston: Boston 111, Milwaukee 98
  • Game 2 @ Boston: Boston 126, Milwaukee 124
  • Game 3 @ Milwaukee: Milwaukee 126, Boston 121
  • Game 4 @ Milwaukee: Boston 138, Milwaukee 137
  • Game 5 @ Boston: Milwaukee 129, Boston 124
  • Game 6 @ Milwaukee: Milwaukee 121, Boston 111
  • Game 7 @ Boston: Boston 119, Milwaukee 113

East Conference Finals[edit]

(1) Boston Celtics vs. (3) Detroit Pistons Celtics win series 4-3

  • Game 1 @ Boston: Boston 104, Detroit 91
  • Game 2 @ Boston: Boston 110, Detroit 101
  • Game 3 @ Detroit: Detroit 122, Boston 104
  • Game 4 @ Detroit: Detroit 145, Boston 119
  • Game 5 @ Boston: Boston 108, Detroit 107
  • Game 6 @ Detroit: Detroit 113, Boston 105
  • Game 7 @ Boston: Boston 117, Detroit 114

NBA finals[edit]

Despite the loss of Bias, the Celtics remained competitive in 1986-87, going 59-23 and again winning the Eastern Conference Championship. Unfortunately, in the Finals the tired, aging, and injured Celtics ran into perhaps the best Los Angeles Lakers team of the decade. The biggest injury was yet another foot injury for Bill Walton, who only played 10 regular season games in 1986-87 after playing 80 games the year before. Walton fought through the injury, playing 12 games (out of 23) in the playoffs, but was not the same player as he was the year before. McHale, Parish and Ainge were also fighting injuries, forcing reserves Darren Daye and Fred Roberts to play larger roles in the series, which the Celtics would lose 4 games to 2.

(1) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (1) Boston Celtics Lakers win series 4-2

  • Game 1 @ Los Angeles: Los Angeles 126, Boston 113
  • Game 2 @ Los Angeles: Los Angeles 141, Boston 122
  • Game 3 @ Boston: Boston 109, Los Angeles 103
  • Game 4 @ Boston: Los Angeles 107, Boston 106
  • Game 5 @ Boston: Boston 123, Los Angeles 108
  • Game 6 @ Los Angeles: Los Angeles 106, Boston 93

Award winners[edit]

  • Larry Bird, All-NBA First Team
  • Kevin McHale, All-NBA First Team
  • Kevin McHale, All-NBA Defensive First Team

References[edit]