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If any single Celtics star defined the term, "gentleman", it was K C Jones

Whatever you hear or read about the late K C Jones, the word "gentleman" is going to be in there. And he was far more than that prior to his recent death on Christmas Day, 2020. 


K C was quiet and dignified, and individuals of that ilk often get lost in the shuffle of modern hype and over-reaction. How important was he in the world of basketball and the Celtics winning ways specifically? (per Wikipedia):

Jones is one of only eight players in basketball history to have won an NCAA championship, an NBA championship, and an Olympic gold medal, joining Bill RussellMagic JohnsonMichael JordanJerry LucasClyde LovelletteQuinn Buckner, and Anthony Davis. In NBA history, only his former teammates Russell (11 championships) and Sam Jones (10) have won more championships during their playing careers.

I was fortunate enough to watch Jones on the parquet, starting in the early 1960's. He had taken up the unenviable task of point guard duties from the legendary Bob Cousy, in addition to acquiring the additional load of guarding the oppositions' best player - the likes of the 76'ers Hal Greer, the Lakers Jerry West, and the Royals' Oscar Robertson. He did this all without complaint or excuses. He was a relentless and gutsy defender.


For anyone attempting to belittle K C's contributions to Boston's eight Championships during his Beantown tenure, I would argue that one of the keenest basketball minds ever, Red Auerbach, drafted him - cherished what he brought to the team - and made sure that K C was on the court for major minutes in crucial games.

So, eight Titles as player - two Championships as assistant coach - and two more as head coach. Pretty damn good. K C Jones should be remembered for what he accomplished as a player and coach, right up there with Red Auerbach, Tommy Heinsohn and John Havlicek. Absolute gentleman? Damn right!



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