Boston Celtics legend Tommy Henson has passed away at the age of 86

Boston Celtics legend Tommy Henson has passed away at the age of 86

The cause of death is unknown.

Henson’s legacy He will be forever tied to the Celtics, having played a role in all 17 of the franchise’s tournaments – from player to coach to color commentator.

It was drafted by the Celtics in 1956, and won the NBA Rookie of the Year for the 1956-1957 season while helping lead the team to the Finals. In the crucial game 7, Heinsohn scored 37 points and 23 rebounds to help the franchise win its first championship.

The team said it has been selected for six All-Star teams and won eight tournaments as a player with the Celtics. He led the team in scoring during four rounds of the title.

Heinsohn retired in 1965 and the number 15 holder was retired by the Celtics that year. He finished his career with 12,194 points and 5,749 rebounds.

“This is a huge loss,” the Celtics owners said in a statement. “Tommy was the best Celtic team. For the past eighteen years, our royal group relied heavily on Tommy’s advice and insights and enjoyed his hundreds of stories about Red Auerbach, Bill Russell and how the Celtics became a breed. It’s remembered forever.”

Russell tweeted: “We were both beginners and life-long friends. In life there are a limited number of true friends, and today I lost one. RIP Heiny.”

In 1969, Heinsohn was appointed head coach of the Celtics and held the position until 1978. He won the Coach of the Year award in 1973, and under his leadership, the Celtics added two additional banners to the tournament in 1974 and 1976. His career with a record number of 427 -263, which trails Red Auerbach only for most wins in the franchise’s history.

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“Without Tommy, the Celtics wouldn’t be the same without Tommy, and he will be sorely missed by those who share his enthusiasm for basketball,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. “We extend our deepest condolences to Tommy’s family, friends and the Celtics.”

Heinsohn became the color broadcast commentator for Celtics in 1981, partnering with Mike Gorman to form a partnership that lasted several decades.

“Roughly 2,800 I sat with Tommy for a match broadcast,” Gorman wrote on Twitter. “Every time she was featured. HOF player … HOF coach … HOF partner. Celtics Nation lost her best voice. Rest in Peace my friend. The privilege of my career has been to be Mike in Mike & Tommy.”

Heinsohn was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a player in 1986 and as a coach in 2015. He is one of only four people inducted into the Hall of Fame as a player and coach, joining Bill Sharman, John Wooden, and Lenny Wilkins on that list.

“Despite all his accomplishments as a player, coach and broadcaster, it was Tommy’s wealthy personality that defined the man,” the team said in a statement.

“Father, grandfather, and loving husband. Talented painter and energetic golf partner. Informal mentor for decades of Celtics coaches and players. Frequent construction critic of referees. Creator of the most” Celtic statue “of them all, The Tommy Point. And boundless love for all things in Boston Celtics, a passion he shared with his fans for 64 years. “

CNN’s David Close contributed to this report.

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