Looking for the perfect gift for naughty Lakers fans on your Christmas list? (A swift kick to the chestnuts, alas, doesn't quite jibe with the whole holiday-spirit thing.) One painless suggestion would be a new book titled 100 Things Celtics Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die, by Boston lawyer Donald Hubbard. Packed with tales from the team's electrifying history and juicy tidbits on Celtic greats — we even learn for the first time the story behind the guy who stole the ball that Havlicek stole! — 100 Things is the quintessential road map to the most successful NBA franchise in history.
In addition to slicing through the Celts' 17-ringed saga, Hubbard poses challenges — "must-do activities," he calls them — to reinforce your No. 1 Fan status: see the Celts on the road, pose for a pic with the Red Auerbach statue, check out a game at the Fours. We're even encouraged to sit through the dreadful 1996 Daymon Wayans/Dan Aykroyd flick Celtic Pride. (Really?! A 22-year title-drought wasn't painful enough?)
But here in Boston, we've grown accustomed to disaster. We thrive on failure as much as we do on victory, and have deep scars to prove it. So it is with that spirit of defeat, and of this season of giving, that I offer excerpts from my new book, 100 Things Celtics Players Should Not Do While Alive.
BE BLACK IN WELLESLEY Okay, this may seem a bit unwarranted, but tell that to, say, rookie guard — and top draft pick in 1990 — Dee Brown, seized outside the Wellesley Hills Post Office that same year while reading mail in his car. It all went down like this. The bank across the street had just been held up by a black man, and police, upon seeing Brown — also black — ordered the promising superstar to the ground at gunpoint and slapped handcuffs on him before realizing their mistake. What, no welcome mat?
SIGN FOR A PACKAGE OF WEED Robert Parish's legacy as one of the greatest centers to play the game will never fade. But his buzz sure did, when, in 1993, the future Hall of Famer was busted for marijuana possession at his suburban home. A tip led FedEx investigators to open a package destined for Parish's address that contained five ounces of ganja. After being resealed, the contraband was resent to 00 by cops, who then stormed his pad and apprehended the 39-year-old pothead. He later paid a $30 fine — the current price for a gram of really, really tasty bud.
CELEBRATE BEING DRAFTED NO. 2 WITH COCAINE Ah, Len Bias, what would have become of you had you not spent the days following your 1986 draft to the Celtics snorting shitty cocaine in a college dorm room? Many believed this University of Maryland standout would have become heir apparent to Larry Bird, and was exactly what the Celts needed to raise yet another championship banner within the Garden's hallowed walls. Instead, he became the "don't do drugs, kids" scare story for a generation of Boston teens — who probably did them anyway.