Red Auerbach

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Red Auerbach_table_infobox_0

Red AuerbachRed Auerbach_table_caption_0
Personal informationRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_0_0
BornRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_1_0 (1917-09-20)September 20, 1917

Brooklyn, New YorkRed Auerbach_cell_0_1_1

DiedRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_2_0 October 28, 2006(2006-10-28) (aged 89)

Washington, D.C.Red Auerbach_cell_0_2_1

NationalityRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_3_0 AmericanRed Auerbach_cell_0_3_1
Listed heightRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_4_0 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)Red Auerbach_cell_0_4_1
Listed weightRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_5_0 170 lb (77 kg)Red Auerbach_cell_0_5_1
Career informationRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_6_0
High schoolRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_7_0 Eastern District

(Brooklyn, New York)Red Auerbach_cell_0_7_1

CollegeRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_8_0 Red Auerbach_cell_0_8_1
PositionRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_9_0 GuardRed Auerbach_cell_0_9_1
Coaching careerRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_10_0 1940–1966Red Auerbach_cell_0_10_1
Career historyRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_11_0
As coach:Red Auerbach_header_cell_0_12_0
1940Red Auerbach_header_cell_0_13_0 St. Albans SchoolRed Auerbach_cell_0_13_1
1940–1943Red Auerbach_header_cell_0_14_0 Roosevelt HSRed Auerbach_cell_0_14_1
19461949Red Auerbach_header_cell_0_15_0 Washington CapitolsRed Auerbach_cell_0_15_1
1949–1950Red Auerbach_header_cell_0_16_0 Tri-Cities BlackhawksRed Auerbach_cell_0_16_1
19501966Red Auerbach_header_cell_0_17_0 Boston CelticsRed Auerbach_cell_0_17_1
Career highlights and awardsRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_19_0
Career coaching recordRed Auerbach_header_cell_0_21_0
NBARed Auerbach_header_cell_0_22_0 938–479 (.662)Red Auerbach_cell_0_22_1

Arnold Jacob "Red" Auerbach (September 20, 1917 – October 28, 2006) was an American professional basketball coach and executive. Red Auerbach_sentence_0

He served as a head coach in the National Basketball Association (NBA), most notably with the Boston Celtics. Red Auerbach_sentence_1

He was also the head coach of the Washington Capitols and Tri-Cities Blackhawks. Red Auerbach_sentence_2

As a coach, Auerbach set NBA records with 938 wins and nine championships. Red Auerbach_sentence_3

After his coaching retirement in 1966, he served as president and front office executive of the Celtics until his death. Red Auerbach_sentence_4

As general manager and team president of the Celtics, he won an additional seven NBA titles for a grand total of 16 in a span of 29 years and making him one of the most successful team officials in the history of North American professional sports. Red Auerbach_sentence_5

Auerbach is remembered as a pioneer of modern basketball, redefining basketball as a game dominated by team play and defense and for introducing the fast break as a potent offensive weapon. Red Auerbach_sentence_6

He groomed many players who went on to be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Red Auerbach_sentence_7

Additionally, Auerbach was vital in breaking down color barriers in the NBA. Red Auerbach_sentence_8

He made history by drafting the first African-American NBA player, Chuck Cooper in 1950, introduced the first African-American starting five in 1964, and hired Bill Russell as the first African-American head coach in North American sports in 1966. Red Auerbach_sentence_9

Famous for his polarizing nature, he was well known for smoking a cigar when he thought a victory was assured, a habit that became, for many, "the ultimate symbol of victory" during his Boston tenure. Red Auerbach_sentence_10

In 1967, the NBA Coach of the Year award, which he had won in 1965, was named the "Red Auerbach Trophy", and Auerbach was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1969. Red Auerbach_sentence_11

In 1970, Auerbach was named President of the Boston Celtics, and first held the presidency from 1970-1997. Red Auerbach_sentence_12

In 2001, after having spent 4 years as the team's vice-chairman, he returned to the role of team president and served in that capacity until his death in 2006. Red Auerbach_sentence_13

In 1980, he was named the greatest coach in the history of the NBA by the Professional Basketball Writers Association of America, and was NBA Executive of the Year in 1980. Red Auerbach_sentence_14

In addition, Auerbach was voted one of the NBA 10 Greatest Coaches in history, was inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame, and is honored with a retired number 2 jersey in the TD Garden, the home of the Boston Celtics. Red Auerbach_sentence_15

Early life Red Auerbach_section_0

Arnold Jacob Auerbach was one of the four children of Marie and Hyman Auerbach. Red Auerbach_sentence_16

Hyman was a Russian-Jewish immigrant from Minsk, Russia, and Marie Auerbach, née Thompson, was American-born. Red Auerbach_sentence_17

Auerbach Sr. had left Russia when he was 13, and the couple owned a delicatessen store and later went into the dry-cleaning business. Red Auerbach_sentence_18

Auerbach spent his whole childhood in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, playing basketball. Red Auerbach_sentence_19

With his flaming red hair and fiery temper, Auerbach was soon nicknamed "Red." Red Auerbach_sentence_20

Amid the Great Depression, Auerbach played basketball as a guard at PS 122 and in the Eastern District High School, where he was named "Second Team All-Brooklyn" by the World-Telegram in his senior year. Red Auerbach_sentence_21

After a season at Seth Low Junior College, Auerbach received an athletic scholarship to the basketball program of Bill Reinhart at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Auerbach was a standout basketball player and graduated with a M.A. Red Auerbach_sentence_22

in 1941. Red Auerbach_sentence_23

In those years, Auerbach began to understand the importance of the fast break, appreciating how potent three charging attackers against two back-pedalling defenders could be. Red Auerbach_sentence_24

First coaching years (1940–1950) Red Auerbach_section_1

In 1940, Auerbach began coaching basketball at the St. Red Auerbach_sentence_25 Albans School and [[Theodore_Roosevelt_High_School_(Washington,_D.C. Red Auerbach_sentence_26

)|Roosevelt High School]] in Washington, D.C. Three years later, he joined the US Navy for three years, coaching the Navy basketball team in Norfolk. Red Auerbach_sentence_27

There, he caught the eye of Washington millionaire Mike Uline, who hired him to coach the Washington Capitols in the newly founded Basketball Association of America (BAA), a predecessor of the NBA. Red Auerbach_sentence_28

In the 1946–47 BAA season, Auerbach led a fast break-oriented team built around early BAA star Bones McKinney and various ex-Navy players to a 49–11 win–loss record, including a standard-setting 17-game winning streak that stood as the single-season league record until 1969. Red Auerbach_sentence_29

In the playoffs, however, they were defeated by the Chicago Stags in six games. Red Auerbach_sentence_30

The next year the Capitols went 28–20 but were eliminated from the playoffs in a one-game Western Division tie-breaker. Red Auerbach_sentence_31

In the 1948–49 BAA season, the Caps won their first 15 games and finished the season at 38–22. Red Auerbach_sentence_32

The team reached the BAA Finals, but were beaten by the Minneapolis Lakers, who were led by Hall-of-Fame center George Mikan. Red Auerbach_sentence_33

In the next season, the BAA and the rival league National Basketball League merged to become the NBA, and Auerbach felt he had to rebuild his squad. Red Auerbach_sentence_34

However, owner Uline declined his proposals, and Auerbach resigned. Red Auerbach_sentence_35

After leaving the Capitols, Auerbach became assistant coach of the Duke Blue Devils men's basketball team. Red Auerbach_sentence_36

It was assumed that Auerbach would take over for head coach Gerry Gerard, who was battling cancer. Red Auerbach_sentence_37

During his tenure at Duke, Auerbach regularly worked with future All-American Dick Groat. Red Auerbach_sentence_38

Auerbach later wrote that he "felt pretty bad waiting for [Gerard] to die" and that it was "no way to get a job". Red Auerbach_sentence_39

Auerbach left Duke after a few months when Ben Kerner, owner of the Tri-Cities Blackhawks, gave him the green light to rebuild the team from scratch. Red Auerbach_sentence_40

Auerbach traded more than two dozen players in just six weeks, and the revamped Blackhawks improved, but ended the 1949–50 NBA season with a losing record of 28–29. Red Auerbach_sentence_41

When Kerner traded Auerbach's favorite player John Mahnken, an angry Auerbach resigned again. Red Auerbach_sentence_42

Also in 1950, Auerbach took a position as the athletic director of Kutsher's Hotel in the Catskills, NY. Red Auerbach_sentence_43

Kutsher's was the center of a summertime basketball league, and players from the New York City area would participate, playing for one of several local country clubs and hotels. Red Auerbach_sentence_44

Boston Celtics (1950–2006) Red Auerbach_section_2

The early years (1950–56) Red Auerbach_section_3

Prior to the 1950–51 NBA season, Walter Brown, owner of the Boston Celtics, was desperate to turn around his struggling and financially strapped franchise, which was reeling from a 22–46 record. Red Auerbach_sentence_45

Brown, in characteristic candor, said to a gathering of local Boston sportswriters, "Boys, I don't know anything about basketball. Red Auerbach_sentence_46

Who would you recommend I hire as coach?" Red Auerbach_sentence_47

The group vociferously answered that he get the recently available Auerbach, and Brown complied. Red Auerbach_sentence_48

In the 1950 NBA draft, Auerbach made some notable moves. Red Auerbach_sentence_49

First, he famously snubbed Hall-of-Fame New England point guard Bob Cousy in the 1950 NBA draft, infuriating the Boston crowd. Red Auerbach_sentence_50

He argued that the flashy Cousy lacked the poise necessary to make his team, taunting him as a "local yokel". Red Auerbach_sentence_51

Second, he drafted African-American Chuck Cooper, the first black player to be drafted by an NBA club. Red Auerbach_sentence_52

With that, Auerbach effectively broke down the color barrier in professional basketball. Red Auerbach_sentence_53

In that year, the core of the Celtics consisted of Hall-of-Fame center Ed Macauley, Auerbach's old favorite McKinney, and an unlikely addition, Cousy. Red Auerbach_sentence_54

Cousy had refused to report to the club that had drafted him (which happened to be the Blackhawks, Auerbach's old club), and because his next team (the Chicago Stags) folded, he ended up with the Celtics. Red Auerbach_sentence_55

With Auerbach's fast-break tactics, the Celtics achieved a 39–30 record but lost in the 1951 NBA Playoffs to the New York Knicks. Red Auerbach_sentence_56

However, the relationship between Auerbach and Cousy improved when the coach saw that the "Houdini of the Hardwood"—as the spectacular dribbler and flashy passer Cousy was lovingly called—became the first great playmaker of the fledgling NBA. Red Auerbach_sentence_57

In the following 1951–52 NBA season, Auerbach made a remarkable draft pick of future Hall-of-Fame guard Bill Sharman. Red Auerbach_sentence_58

With the high-scoring Macauley, elite passer Cousy, and new prodigy Sharman, Auerbach had a core that provided high-octane fast-break basketball. Red Auerbach_sentence_59

Other notable players who joined the Celtics were forwards Frank Ramsey and Jim Loscutoff. Red Auerbach_sentence_60

In the next years until 1956, the Celtics would make the playoffs every year, but never won the title. Red Auerbach_sentence_61

In fact, the Celtics often choked in the playoffs, going a mere 10–17 in the postseason from 1951 through 1956. Red Auerbach_sentence_62

As Cousy put it: "We would get tired in the end and could not get the ball." Red Auerbach_sentence_63

As a result, Auerbach sought a defensive big man who could both get easy rebounds, initiate fast breaks, and close out games. Red Auerbach_sentence_64

The dynasty (1956–66) Red Auerbach_section_4

Before the 1956 NBA draft, Auerbach had already set his sights on defensive rebounding center Bill Russell. Red Auerbach_sentence_65

Via a draft-day trade that sent Macauley and rookie Cliff Hagan to the rival St. Red Auerbach_sentence_66 Louis Hawks (Kerner had moved the Blackhawks to St. Louis), he acquired a center in Russell, who would go on to become one of the greatest basketball players of all time. Red Auerbach_sentence_67

In the same draft, Auerbach picked up forward Tom Heinsohn and guard K.C. Red Auerbach_sentence_68 Jones, also two future Hall-of-Famers. Red Auerbach_sentence_69

Emphasizing team play rather than individual performances, and stressing that defense was more important than offense, Auerbach drilled his players to play tough defense and force opposing turnovers for easy fast-break points. Red Auerbach_sentence_70

Forward Tom Sanders recalled that the teams were also regularly among the best-conditioned and toughest squads. Red Auerbach_sentence_71

Anchored by defensive stalwart Russell, the tough Celtics forced their opponents to take low-percentage shots from farther distances (there was no three-point arc at the time); misses were then often grabbed by perennial rebounding champion Russell, who then either passed it on to elite fast-break distributor Cousy or made the outlet pass himself, providing their sprinting colleagues opportunities for an easy slam dunk or layup. Red Auerbach_sentence_72

Auerbach also emphasized the need for role players like Frank Ramsey and John Havlicek, who became two of the first legitimate sixth men in NBA history, a role later played by Don Nelson. Red Auerbach_sentence_73

Auerbach's recipe proved devastating to the opposition. Red Auerbach_sentence_74

From 1957 to 1966, the Celtics won nine of ten NBA championships. Red Auerbach_sentence_75

This included eight consecutive championships—which is the longest championship streak in North American sports—and six victories over the Los Angeles Lakers of Hall-of-Famers Elgin Baylor and Jerry West in the NBA Finals. Red Auerbach_sentence_76

The streak also denied perennial scoring and rebounding champion Wilt Chamberlain a title during Auerbach's coaching reign. Red Auerbach_sentence_77

Flowing from Auerbach's emphasis on teamwork, what was also striking about his teams was that they never seemed to have a dominant scorer: in the 1960–61 NBA season, for instance, the Celtics had six players who scored between 15 and 21 points per game, but none made the Top 10 scoring list. Red Auerbach_sentence_78

In 1964, he sent out the first-ever NBA starting five consisting of an African-American quintet, namely Russell, Willie Naulls, Tom Sanders, Sam Jones, and K. C. Jones. Red Auerbach_sentence_79

Auerbach would go a step further in the 1966–67 NBA season, when he stepped down after winning nine titles in 11 years, and made Bill Russell player-coach. Red Auerbach_sentence_80

Auerbach also popularized smoking a victory cigar whenever he thought a game was already decided, a habit that became cult-like in popularity in the Boston area. Red Auerbach_sentence_81

Furthermore, having acquired a reputation as a fierce competitor, he often got into verbal altercations with officials, receiving more fines and getting ejected more often than any other coach in NBA history. Red Auerbach_sentence_82

All in all, Auerbach directly coached nine NBA championship teams and mentored four players—Russell, Sharman, Heinsohn, and K.C. Red Auerbach_sentence_83

Jones—who would go on to win an additional seven NBA championships as coaches (two each for Russell, Heinsohn and Jones, all with the Celtics, and one for Sharman with the Lakers). Red Auerbach_sentence_84

Thirteen players who played for Auerbach have been inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame—Macauley, Ramsey, Cousy, Sharman, Heinsohn, Clyde Lovellette, Arnie Risen, Andy Phillip, John R. Thompson (as a coach), Russell, K. C. Jones, Havlicek, and Sam Jones. Red Auerbach_sentence_85

Although Don Nelson played for Auerbach only during his last year as coach, his influence was profound: Nelson would later join Auerbach as one of the 10 Greatest Coaches in NBA history. Red Auerbach_sentence_86

Sharman and Heinsohn would become two of only four people to be inducted into the Hall of Fame as both a player and a coach. Red Auerbach_sentence_87

Few if any coaches can match Auerbach's record of wins and successful mentorship of his players. Red Auerbach_sentence_88

General manager (1966–84) Red Auerbach_section_5

Prior to the 1965–66 NBA season, Auerbach announced the coming year would be his last as coach, stating to the rest of the league, "This is your chance to take your last shot at me." Red Auerbach_sentence_89

After losing game 1 of the 1966 finals to the Lakers, he publicly named his successor, center Bill Russell. Red Auerbach_sentence_90

The Celtics won the series in seven games, sending Auerbach out on top. Red Auerbach_sentence_91

Russell then took over as a player-coach, and so became the first African-American head coach ever in the four major North American professional team sports. Red Auerbach_sentence_92

While his pupil led the Celtics to two further titles in 1968 and 1969, Auerbach rebuilt the aging Celtics with shrewd draft picks, among them future Hall-of-Famers Dave Cowens and Jo Jo White, as well as Paul Westphal and Don Chaney. Red Auerbach_sentence_93

With his ex-player Tom Heinsohn coaching the Celtics and led by former sixth man John Havlicek, Auerbach's new recruits won the Atlantic Division every year from 1972 to 1976, winning the NBA title in 1974 and 1976. Red Auerbach_sentence_94

Auerbach also signed veteran forward/center Paul Silas and ex-ABA star Charles Scott. Red Auerbach_sentence_95

However, Auerbach could not prevent the Celtics from going into a slump at the end of the 1970s. Red Auerbach_sentence_96

He traded away both Silas and Westphal because they wanted salary increases that would have made them higher earners than the best player on the Celtics (Cowens), which was not acceptable to Auerbach. Red Auerbach_sentence_97

While the Westphal trade to the Phoenix Suns in exchange for Charlie Scott was considered a success due to the Celtics' 13th title in 1976, Auerbach later admitted he erred in letting Silas go, even after Cowens personally begged him to give Silas a new deal. Red Auerbach_sentence_98

When Havlicek retired in 1978, the Celtics went 61–103 in two seasons. Red Auerbach_sentence_99

In the summer of 1978, after the worst in a string of contentious clashes with several different owners after Walter Brown's passing in 1964, Auerbach hopped into a taxi to take him to Logan Airport, where he was to board a flight to New York to consider a lucrative contract offer from Knicks owner Sonny Werblin. Red Auerbach_sentence_100

However, the cab driver pleaded with him to stay, emphasizing how much Bostonians loved him and considered him family. Red Auerbach_sentence_101

Soon after, heading a team press conference, and with his typical bravado, Auerbach puffed on his trademark cigar and stated simply, "I'm not going anywhere. Red Auerbach_sentence_102

We're going to sign Larry Bird, and we're going to be on top again." Red Auerbach_sentence_103

Despite knowing that Bird, a talented young player from unheralded Indiana State, had a year of college eligibility remaining, he had drafted Bird as a junior eligible in the 1978 NBA draft and waited for a year until the future Hall-of-Fame forward Bird arrived, finally setting aside his team salary rules when it became clear that his choices were paying Bird a record-setting rookie salary or watch him simply re-enter the 1979 draft. Red Auerbach_sentence_104

Bird then became the highest-paid Celtic as a rookie, with a $650,000-per year deal. Red Auerbach_sentence_105

Auerbach knew that the brilliant, hardworking Bird would be the cornerstone of a new Celtics generation. Red Auerbach_sentence_106

In 1980, Auerbach achieved another great coup, which was dubbed "The Steal of The Century". Red Auerbach_sentence_107

He convinced the Golden State Warriors to trade him a #3 overall pick and future Hall-of-Fame center Robert Parish in exchange for two picks in the 1980 NBA draft: #1 overall Joe Barry Carroll and the #13 pick Rickey Brown. Red Auerbach_sentence_108

With the #3 pick, Auerbach selected the player he most wanted in the draft, Kevin McHale, who would also be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Red Auerbach_sentence_109

The frontcourt of Parish-McHale-Bird became one of the greatest front lines in NBA history. Red Auerbach_sentence_110

Auerbach hired head coach Bill Fitch who led the revamped Celtics to the 1981 title. Red Auerbach_sentence_111

In 1983, Auerbach named former Celtics player K.C. Red Auerbach_sentence_112 Jones coach of the Celtics. Red Auerbach_sentence_113

Starting in 1984, Jones coached the Celtics to four straight appearances in the NBA Finals, winning championships in 1984 and 1986. Red Auerbach_sentence_114

Auerbach as a part-time side gig was the color analyst on NBA and college basketball games for TBS sports from 1982-87. Red Auerbach_sentence_115

President and vice chairman (1984–2006) Red Auerbach_section_6

In 1984, after he relinquished his general managing duties to Jan Volk, Auerbach focused on continuing as president and later vice-chairman of the Boston Celtics. Red Auerbach_sentence_116

In a surprising move after winning their 15th title, he traded popular guard Gerald Henderson, the game 2 hero in the finals against the Lakers, for Seattle's first round draft pick in 1986. Red Auerbach_sentence_117

Two years later, after the Celtics defeated Houston in the finals for their 16th championship, he used the second overall pick in the 1986 draft, the pick acquired from Seattle, to take college prodigy Len Bias from Maryland, arguably the most brilliant coup in Auerbach's stellar career. Red Auerbach_sentence_118

With the team's star players still in their prime, the defending champions appeared set to compete at the top for years. Red Auerbach_sentence_119

However, tragedy struck just two days later, when Bias died of a cocaine overdose. Red Auerbach_sentence_120

Several years later, Celtics star player Reggie Lewis died suddenly in 1993, and without any league compensation for either loss, the team fell into decline, not seeing another Finals in Auerbach's lifetime. Red Auerbach_sentence_121

In an interview, Auerbach confessed that he lost interest in big-time managing in the early 1990s, preferring to stay in the background and concentrating on his pastimes, racquetball and his beloved cigar-smoking. Red Auerbach_sentence_122

He would, however, stay on with the Celtics as president until 1997, as vice chairman until 2001, and then became president again, a position he held until his death, although in his final years, he was weakened by heart problems and often used a wheelchair. Red Auerbach_sentence_123

Personal life Red Auerbach_section_7

Auerbach was one of four children of American-born Marie Auerbach and Russian Jewish immigrant Hyman Auerbach in Brooklyn. Red Auerbach_sentence_124

His brother Zang Auerbach, four years his junior, was a respected cartoonist and portraitist at the Washington Star. Red Auerbach_sentence_125

He married Dorothy Lewis in the spring of 1941. Red Auerbach_sentence_126

The couple had two daughters, Nancy and Randy.They also helped raise Nancy’s daughter Julie. Red Auerbach_sentence_127

Auerbach was known for his love for cigar smoking. Red Auerbach_sentence_128

Because Auerbach made his victory cigars a cult in the 1960s, Boston restaurants would often say "no cigar or pipe smoking, except for Red Auerbach". Red Auerbach_sentence_129

In addition, Auerbach was well known for his love of Chinese food. Red Auerbach_sentence_130

In an interview shortly before his death, he explained that since the 1950s, Chinese takeout was the most convenient nutrition: back then, NBA teams travelled on regular flights and had a tight time schedule, so filling up the stomach with heavier non-Chinese food meant wasting time and risking travel-sickness. Red Auerbach_sentence_131

Over the years, Auerbach became so fond of this food that he even became a part-owner of a Chinese restaurant in Boston. Red Auerbach_sentence_132

Despite a heart operation, he remained active in his 80s, playing racquetball and making frequent public appearances. Red Auerbach_sentence_133

Despite his fierce nature, Auerbach was popular among his players. Red Auerbach_sentence_134

He recalled that on his 75th birthday party, 45 of his former players showed up; and when he turned 80, his perennial 1960s victim Wilt Chamberlain showed up, a gesture which Auerbach dearly appreciated. Red Auerbach_sentence_135

In an interview with ESPN, Auerbach stated that his all-star fantasy team would consist of Bill Russell—who in the former's opinion was the ultimate player to start a franchise with—as well as Bob Pettit, Elgin Baylor, Oscar Robertson and Jerry West, with John Havlicek as the sixth man. Red Auerbach_sentence_136

Regarding greatest basketballers of all time, Auerbach's candidates were Russell, Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Jordan." Red Auerbach_sentence_137

Death Red Auerbach_section_8

Auerbach died of a heart attack on October 28, 2006 at the age of 89. Red Auerbach_sentence_138

NBA commissioner David Stern said, "the void caused by his death will never be filled" and players Bill Russell, K.C. Red Auerbach_sentence_139 Jones, John Havlicek and Larry Bird, as well as contemporaries like Jerry West, Pat Riley, and Wayne Embry universally hailed Auerbach as one of the greatest personalities in NBA history. Red Auerbach_sentence_140

Bird stated "Red shared our passion for the game, our commitment to excellence, and our desire to do whatever it takes to win." Red Auerbach_sentence_141

Auerbach was survived by his daughters, Nancy, Randy, Julie, and Julie’s children Peter, Hope, and Noelle. Red Auerbach_sentence_142

Auerbach was interred in Falls Church, Virginia at King David Memorial Gardens within National Memorial Park on October 31, 2006. Red Auerbach_sentence_143

Attendees included basketball dignitaries Bill Russell, Kevin McHale, Danny Ainge, and David Stern. Red Auerbach_sentence_144

During the 2006–07 NBA season, NBA TV and NBA.com aired reruns of Auerbach's four-minute instructional videos known as "Red on Roundball" previously aired during NBA on CBS halftime shows in the 1970s and 1980s, and as a testament to his importance in the Boston sports world, the Boston Red Sox honored Auerbach at their April 20, 2007 game against the New York Yankees by wearing green uniforms and by hanging replicated Celtics championship banners on the "Green Monster" at Fenway Park. Red Auerbach_sentence_145

Boston won 7–6. Red Auerbach_sentence_146

Prior to Boston's season opener against the Wizards, his signature was officially placed on the parquet floor near center court, thereby naming the court as "Red Auerbach Parquet Floor." Red Auerbach_sentence_147

The ceremony was attended by his daughter Randy and some of the Celtics legends. Red Auerbach_sentence_148

The signature replaced the Red Auerbach memorial logo used during the 2007 season. Red Auerbach_sentence_149

Writing Red Auerbach_section_9

Auerbach was the author of seven books. Red Auerbach_sentence_150

His first, Basketball for the Player, the Fan and Coach, has been translated into seven languages and is the best-selling basketball book in print. Red Auerbach_sentence_151

His second book, co-authored with Paul Sann, was Winning the Hard Way. Red Auerbach_sentence_152

He also wrote a pair of books with Joe Fitzgerald: Red Auerbach: An Autobiography and Red Auerbach On and Off the Court. Red Auerbach_sentence_153

In October 1991 M.B.A.: Management by Auerbach was co-authored with Ken Dooley. Red Auerbach_sentence_154

In 1994, Seeing Red was written with Dan Shaughnessy. Red Auerbach_sentence_155

In October 2004, his last book, Let Me Tell You a Story, was co-authored with sports journalist John Feinstein. Red Auerbach_sentence_156

Legacy Red Auerbach_section_10

Among Auerbach's accomplishments during his 20-year professional coaching career were eleven Eastern Division titles (including nine in a row from 1957–65), 11 appearances in the finals (including ten in a row from 1957–66), and nine NBA championships. Red Auerbach_sentence_157

With a total of 16 NBA championship rings in a span of 29 years (1957–86) as the Celtics coach, general manager, and team president, Auerbach is the most successful team official in NBA history. Red Auerbach_sentence_158

He is credited with creating several generations of championship Boston Celtics teams, including the first Celtics dynasty with Bill Russell, which won an NBA record eight titles in a row (1959–66). Red Auerbach_sentence_159

As Celtics general manager, he created championship-winning teams around Hall-of-Famers Dave Cowens in the 1970s and Larry Bird in the 1980s. Red Auerbach_sentence_160

In addition to coaching, Auerbach was a highly effective mentor; several players coached by Auerbach would become successful coaches themselves. Red Auerbach_sentence_161

Bill Russell won two titles as Auerbach's successor, Tom Heinsohn won a pair of championships as a Celtics coach in the 1970s, K.C. Red Auerbach_sentence_162 Jones led the Celtics to two further titles in the 1980s, and Bill Sharman coached the Los Angeles Lakers to their first title in 1972. Red Auerbach_sentence_163

In addition, prototypical sixth man Don Nelson had a highly successful coaching career and joined his mentor Auerbach as one of 10 Greatest Coaches in NBA history. Red Auerbach_sentence_164

Throughout his coaching tenure in Boston, Auerbach served several other roles including, but not limited to, general manager, head of scouting, personnel director and travel agent. Red Auerbach_sentence_165

In the early offseasons, he would take the Celtics on barnstorming tours around New England, promoting the still fledgling NBA. Red Auerbach_sentence_166

At the end of every season, regardless of their on-court success, he would approach owner Brown and ask, "Walter, are our last paychecks going to clear?" Red Auerbach_sentence_167

to which Brown would always positively respond, and they would. Red Auerbach_sentence_168

Despite Brown's own close association with the NHL's Boston Bruins, whose owners also possessed the Boston Garden, the Celtics were fleeced on concessions and profits as tenants. Red Auerbach_sentence_169

During this era, when most team owners not only thought of, but also treated their players as cattle and/or slaves, athletes from all the four major professional sports leagues were fighting for their rights and economic fairness. Red Auerbach_sentence_170

As Auerbach represented management of the Celtics, team members frustrated with their salaries had only him to complain to, or about, in their role in the formation of the players' union. Red Auerbach_sentence_171

These interpersonal dynamics are construed as follows by journalist David Halberstam: Red Auerbach_sentence_172

Pertaining to the above, Walter Brown was not rich; also that as Auerbach was as tough at the negotiating table as he was on the practice court and in the locker room, it was always for the purpose of getting the most out of his players. Red Auerbach_sentence_173

In the summer of 1984, with much trepidation, Auerbach reluctantly signed former finals MVP Cedric Maxwell to a lucrative guaranteed contract to stay with the Celtics. Red Auerbach_sentence_174

Then, Auerbach's worst fears came true when Maxwell arrived that fall out of shape, and, suffering from various injuries, provided little contribution as the team lost a playoff for the first time ever to the Lakers in the 1985 Finals. Red Auerbach_sentence_175

Two subsequent facts are perhaps most relevant in evaluating Auerbach's legacy: First, he was able to trade Maxwell to San Diego in exchange for former MVP Bill Walton, who was a major contributor to the team winning its 16th title in 1986, the last of Auerbach's career. Red Auerbach_sentence_176

Second, Maxwell continues to be embraced as a beloved member of the Celtics family, including having his number retired alongside the team's legendary greats. Red Auerbach_sentence_177

In Auerbach's honor, the Celtics have retired a number-2 jersey with the name "AUERBACH", memorializing his role as the second most important Celtic ever, behind founder Walter Brown, in whose honor the number-1 "BROWN" jersey is retired. Red Auerbach_sentence_178

His story is documented in The First Basket, the first and most comprehensive documentary on the history of Jews and Basketball. Red Auerbach_sentence_179

He is also featured as an interview subject for the film. Red Auerbach_sentence_180

Coaching pioneer Red Auerbach_section_11

From his early days, Auerbach was convinced that the fast break, where a team used a quick outlet pass to fast guards who run downcourt and score before the opponent had re-established position, was a potent tactical weapon. Red Auerbach_sentence_181

This new strategy proved lethal for the opposition. Red Auerbach_sentence_182

Further, Auerbach moved emphasis away from individual accolades and instilled the teamwork element into his players. Red Auerbach_sentence_183

He also invented the concept of the role player and of the sixth man, stating: "Individual honors are nice, but no Celtic has ever gone out of his way to achieve them. Red Auerbach_sentence_184

We have never had the league's top scorer. Red Auerbach_sentence_185

In fact, we won seven league championships without placing even one among the league's top 10 scorers. Red Auerbach_sentence_186

Our pride was never rooted in statistics." Red Auerbach_sentence_187

While Auerbach was not known for his tactical bandwidth, famously restricting his teams to just seven plays, he was well known for his psychological warfare, often provoking opposing players and officials with unabashed trash talk. Red Auerbach_sentence_188

For his fiery temper, he was ejected more often and received more fines than any other coach in NBA history. Red Auerbach_sentence_189

Age did nothing to diminish his fire; in 1983, after star Larry Bird was ejected from a preseason game against Philadelphia at the Garden along with the Sixers' role player Marc Iavaroni, Auerbach stormed onto the court and after taking the officials to task, screamed nose-to-nose with the 6'10" 260-pound Moses Malone. Red Auerbach_sentence_190

Concerning his own team, Auerbach was softer. Red Auerbach_sentence_191

Earl Lloyd, the first black player to play in the NBA, said: "Red Auerbach convinced his players that he loved them [...] so all they wanted to do was please him." Red Auerbach_sentence_192

No color barrier Red Auerbach_section_12

Auerbach was known for choosing players for talent and motivation, with disregard for skin color or ethnicity. Red Auerbach_sentence_193

In 1950, he made NBA history by drafting the league's first African-American player, Chuck Cooper. Red Auerbach_sentence_194

He constantly added new black players to his squad, including Bill Russell, Tom Sanders, Sam Jones, K.C. Red Auerbach_sentence_195 Jones, and Willie Naulls. Red Auerbach_sentence_196

In 1964, these five players became the first African-American starting five in the NBA. Red Auerbach_sentence_197

When Auerbach gave up coaching to become the Celtics general manager in 1966, he appointed Bill Russell as his successor. Red Auerbach_sentence_198

Russell became the first black NBA coach, and was the first black coach of a professional sports organization since Fritz Pollard in 1925. Red Auerbach_sentence_199

Similarly, in the 1980s, as the Celtics GM, Auerbach fielded an earnest, hardworking team that was derided as being "too white." Red Auerbach_sentence_200

While the 1980s Celts were, in actuality, neither predominantly white nor black, the NBA at the time was predominately black. Red Auerbach_sentence_201

White players like Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, Danny Ainge, and Bill Walton played alongside Tiny Archibald, Dennis Johnson, Robert Parish, and Cedric Maxwell to bring three more championships in the '80s under coaches Bill Fitch (white) and K.C. Red Auerbach_sentence_202

Jones (black). Red Auerbach_sentence_203

Arnold "Red" Auerbach Award Red Auerbach_section_13

To honor Auerbach, the Celtics created the Arnold "Red" Auerbach award in 2006. Red Auerbach_sentence_204

It is an award given annually to the current Celtic player or coach who "best exemplifies the spirit and meaning of a true Celtic." Red Auerbach_sentence_205

NBA Coach of the Year Award Red Auerbach_section_14

The NBA gives out an annual coach of the year award to honor the league's best coach as voted by a panel of sportswriters. Red Auerbach_sentence_206

The trophy is named the 'Red Auerbach trophy' and has a figure of Auerbach sitting on a bench. Red Auerbach_sentence_207

NBA Red Auerbach_section_15

See also Red Auerbach_section_16

Red Auerbach_unordered_list_0


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red Auerbach.