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The Great John Havlicek “Moves On”

April 27, 2019

Thoughts and concepts regarding time and especially movement, (always moving) resonate, as I recall the great basketball player, John Havlicek, who died days back, at the age of 79.

Known as “Hondo,” Mr. Havlicek played on 8 Boston Celtics’ title teams (only Bill Russell (11) and he commented on the pain, as another great teammate and friend passed away and Sam Jones (10) played on more) making two “almost must–called by Most'” (Johnny, the gravel voiced, legendary Celts’ broadcaster) plays en route.

Coincidental, eery and perhaps a way to say, John Havlicek will be fine from now on, as his battle with the horror of Parkinson’s disease is over, is that the Celtics open their quarterfinal series, playing their first game after Havlicek’s death, at Milwaukee, in an early Sunday afternoon, start tomorrow.

John Havlicek played in 3 winner take all 7th games of the NBA Final, his Celtics winning all 3, the last of which was the “Hondo” led, series MVP performance, at Milwaukee on a Mother’s Day afternoon in 1974.

One of his great, “must?” plays, was when he tipped Hal Greer’s inbound pass intended for Chet Walker (oh the names, oh the memories, though re John Havlicek–I was so often on the “wrong” rooting side) in effect “stealing the ball” yielding a (110-109) “hold on” win by Boston, vs the/”my” Wilt Chamberlain led, Philly 76ers in #7,Eastern final in 1965. I was too young to stay up and watch it, as I believe “New York 9” telecast it (still) here.

Regarding that tilt, we will never know if the Sixers would have scored, there were 5 seconds left and I say probably not, making the “Havlicek stole the ball” play a tad over rated, however, clearly great!

The other one, John’s running, bank shot that preceded even more incredible drama in the second overtime of game 5 of the ’76 NBA final vs the upstart Phoenix Suns (recently their coach John MacLeod passed away), WAS a “MUST,” certainly in the game and likely the series.

Oh the movement, John always did. His effort and determination were his hallmark. Speaking of which, he likely kept the “cards” coming, as he stayed married to the lovely Beth, all these years.

Time moves even more fervently than John Havlicek, creating among other things, memories. Enjoy some involving John Havlicek, as they follow in this nice tribute.

 

John Havlicek, pictured above.

The tribute commences with the play to end #7, ’65 East Final “Havlicek stole the ball,” and includes roughly 35 seconds in, John’s shot to put Boston ahead in #5, 1976 NBA final.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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