John Havlicek Boston Celtics Signed I/O Spalding NBA Basketball
John Havlicek Signed Spalding NBA Basketball comes with Schwartz Sports COA.
Havlicek played college basketball with Jerry Lucas at Ohio State University. That team, which also had future coaching legend Bobby Knight as a reserve, won the 1960 NCAA title He was named as an alternate to the 1960 Olympic Games United States Team.
Nicknamed "Hondo", (a name inspired by the John Wayne movie of the same name), Havlicek revolutionized the "sixth man" role, and has been immortalized for his clutch steal in the closing seconds of the 1965 Eastern Conference championship.
In the seventh and final game, played at Boston Garden, the Celtics led the Philadelphia 76ers 110-109 with five seconds left, and only needed to inbound the ball underneath their basket to secure the victory and advance to the NBA Final, however, Bill Russell's pass struck a wire that hung down from the ceiling and helped support the baskets, the turnover giving the 76ers and Wilt Chamberlain the ball and a chance to win the game—and the series.Hal Greer was set to throw the inbounds pass for the 76ers. Havlicek stood with his back to Greer, guarding Chet Walker.
Veteran referee Earl Strom, who wrote about this in his memoir "Calling the Shots," called Havlicek's reaction one of the greatest plays Strom ever saw in his 32 years as a professional official.
Havlicek is the Celtics all-time leader in points and games played, scoring 26,395 points (20.8 points per game, 11th all-time in points scored in the NBA), and playing in 1,270 games (17th all-time). He became the first player to score 1,000 points in 16 consecutive seasons, with his best season coming during the 1970-71 NBA season when he averaged 28.9 points per game.
Havlicek shares the NBA Finals single-game record for most points in an overtime period (9 in a May 10, 1974 game vs. the Milwaukee Bucks), and was named that year's NBA Finals MVP.
In the second overtime of Game Five of the 1976 NBA Finals, Havlicek made a leaning, running bank shot that appeared to be the game-winner, as fans spilled onto the floor. But, Havlicek's shot went in with one second left and Phoenix was allowed one final shot (after Jo Jo White sank the technical for Phoenix's illegal timeout), which Gar Heard sank to force the third overtime. The Celtics went on to win the game in triple overtime.
Aside from being a great sixth man at the start of his career, Havlicek became known for his ability to play both forward and guard, his relentlessness and tenacity on both offense and defense, his outstanding skills in all facets of the game, his constant movement, and his untiring ability to run up and down the court. Because of his endurance, he was a devastating fastbreak finisher, one who could suddenly score in bunches when his Celtics team would shut out the other team and grab defensive rebounds. Although he did not have a high field goal percentage, he was a clutch outside shooter with great range. He was also the type of player who would do what it took to help his team score a victory, such as grab a clutch rebound, draw a charge or make a steal in a key defensive moment, or settle the team with a clutch basket or assist. In 1974, Bill Russell summed up Havlicek's career by saying "He is the best all-around player I ever saw."
A thirteen-time NBA All-Star, Havlicek retired in 1978 and his number 17 jersey was immediately retired at the Boston Garden. In 1984 Havlicek became a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. In 1997 he was selected as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History. Havlicek was ranked #17 on SLAM Magazine's Top 50 NBA Players of all time in 2009.
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