I know these are different times and very different circumstances, but Red Auerbach would never have done such a thing. If the Nets wanted a guy under contract with the Celtics, Red would have made the Nets pay. Even though Red didn’t want the guy around anymore.
Let’s go back to the 1969-70 season when 41-year-old Bob Cousy was coaching the Cincinnati Royals and reluctantly agreed to come out of retirement to help the cash-strapped team sell some tickets. Coach Cousy hadn’t played a game in seven years, but agreed to put them on to help the struggling franchise.
“Not so fast,” said Red, who was rebuilding the Celtics after Bill Russell’s retirement. The Celtics still owned Cousy’s NBA rights; he was on their “retired” list. He couldn’t play for another team without their permission. So Red demanded compensation.
“How do we know Cousy isn’t better than ever at 41? Red asked. “Like Gordie Howe and Pancho Gonzalez?” (Tom Brady was not yet born.)
The Royals have reluctantly parted ways with 6ft 7in striker Bill Dinwiddie to grant the Cooz his ‘freedom’.
Cousy played just 34 minutes in seven games, scoring a grand total of 5 points for the Royals, but he never forgot Red’s intransigence.
“It was purely a promotional gimmick, and I knew it wasn’t going to make an impact,” Cousy said Thursday. “I was upset at the time, but Arnold did it like he did everything else. He saw an opportunity and he wasn’t going to let it pass. That’s why Arnold was so successful as anyone since Machiavelli.
More than a decade later, Red did the same when former Boston MVP Dave Cowens retired before the start of the 1980-81 season. Two seasons later, when Cowens decided to return, he knew he had to go through Red.
“Red kept your rights,” Cowens recalled last week. “Just because you were retired, you still weren’t free. I thought I had something planned to get back with Phoenix, but Red said, “No, you’re going to Milwaukee.” ”
In exchange for Cowens – a player who had been retired for two seasons and would only play 40 games the rest of his career – Auerbach acquired Bucks starting goaltender Quinn Buckner, who ended up helping the Celtics’ championship team in 1984. In 1985, Red traded Buckner for Jerry Sichting, who was a key contributor when the Celtics won another championship in 1986.
Seven years after Auerbach’s death, Danny Ainge and current Celtics ownership went through a month-long negotiation with the Clippers for Doc Rivers, who still had three years left on his contract in Boston. The Celtics were left with a first-round pick in 2015.
Like many of us, Cowens is surprised the Celtics aren’t getting anything for Udoka.
“That’s how the fans are going to feel,” the tall redhead said. “Why be so kind? They’re more magnanimous than Red would have been, that’s for sure.
The Celtics are showing compassion. They are nice to Udoka. They get rid of a headache and a potential dispute. And they help the rival Nets.
“Perhaps he will become the coach of one of our biggest rivals?” Marcus Smart said to Adam Himmelsbach of The Globe on Wednesday. “It’s hard. It makes no sense.”
Red would have hated that.
▪ Quiz (courtesy Tyler Kepner, author of “The Grandest Stage”): Phillies batting coach Kevin Long coached four World Series teams: Phillies, Nationals, Mets, Yankees. Forty-two players appeared on a series roster for three teams. Name the only player to make a World Series with four teams (answer below).
▪ The Philadelphia Phillies have played 140 seasons and have never appeared in a Game 7.
▪ New York Post baseball insider Jon Heyman (who has a great pipeline with Xander Bogaerts’ agent Scott Boras) predicts that Bogaerts will land an eight-year contract worth $225 million on the free agent market. The Red Sox’s permanent offer to Bogaerts is four years, $90 million.
▪ I know it was the right move in baseball, but I still hated to see Cristian Javier taken out of a World Series no-hitter after six sensational innings in Game 4.
▪ Dave Dombrowski, President of Phillies Baseball Operations says USA Today he didn’t think he was treated well by the Red Sox. He chose not to develop on this statement during the World Series, but The New York Times reported that Dombrowski “never felt he was treated unfairly by any other organization”.
▪ The Cubs hired Mike Sonne as the team’s “baseball scientist” last weekend. Seriously.
▪ Hall of Famer Jim Kaat after watching Phillies right fielder Nick Castellanos’ game-saving catch in Game 1 of the World Series: “I like what he did. He played a lot shallower than the scans suggested because his instincts were telling him to. What a concept!”
▪ When Philadelphia television network NBC-10 announced Brady’s divorce identifying Brady only as “the losing quarterback of Super Bowl 52,” it reminded me of an old headline from an old Philadelphia newspaper.
In 1980, while the Phillies were in the news (en route to their first-ever World Series victory), a local scientist won a Nobel Prize and was celebrated with the title “Phillies Fan Wins Nobel.”
Sports Illustrated said it looked something like Polish Cardinal Karol Jozef Wojtyla (a recreational skier) elected pope in 1978 and a Warsaw newspaper advertising, “Local Ski Buff Tabbed Pontiff.”
▪ While the team was in Philadelphia, a few local dining establishments refused to sell catering orders to the Astros.
▪ How many of you knew that George Brett was taken out of first base after getting his 3,000th hit? To imagine.
On September 30, 1992, Brett was with the Royals in Anaheim, not far from his childhood home of El Segundo. He had four hits at the start of the day and wasn’t expected to play, but Hal McRae put him in the lineup and Brett went 4-for-5, splitting Angels left-hander Tim Fortugno in the seventh to become the 17th hardball player. history of reaching 3,000.
After a break for the celebrations (all the Royals came out of their dugouts to congratulate Brett, and the Angels provided fireworks), play resumed. Brett took the lead and started chatting with first baseman Gary Gaetti, then was picked by Fortugno.
▪ Cowboys owner Jerry Jones turned 80 on October 13 and his birthday party featured a live performance by none other than Jerry Lee Lewis, who died on October 28 at the age of 87. Jones’ birthday party may have been his last. concert” by The Killer, the man who caused a stir in 1957 with “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” and “Great Balls of Fire”.
▪ Venus Williams sent an Instagram message indicating that she may retire. In 27 years of touring, Venus has won seven Grand Slam singles titles and performed with ultimate dignity.
▪ Good luck to former US Senator Scott Brown, who has just become coach of the Amesbury High School women’s basketball team. Brown was a star player at Wakefield High and Tufts at the time, and his daughter Ayla was one of the great high school players in Massachusetts history, scoring 2,358 points at Nobles. Also an “American Idol” star, Ayla had a great career at Boston College after Nobles.
Scott Brown recently coached a junior high school team in Rye, NH
I wonder if new Coach Brown players will be looking for old clips of Jon Hamm playing him on “Saturday Night Live”.
▪ According to Umpire Scorecards (an unofficial Twitter platform run by a Boston University student), Pat Hoberg had a perfect match behind the plate in Game 2 of the World Series last weekend in Houston. The website ruled that Hoberg made the right call on all 129 shots made in the game. Take that, Amica Pitch Zone!
▪ Answer to the quiz: Lonnie Smith (Phillies, Cardinals, Royals, Braves).
Dan Shaughnessy is a columnist for The Globe. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @dan_shaughnessy.