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Dennis Johnson: "Best Teammate Ever"


     Dennis Johnson was a late bloomer in regards to his NBA career. Early on in his career he was known as a scorer and dunker. Later in his career he was know as a defensive stopper and some say the most underrated player of all time. No matter where he played he left an impact on that organization. 

     Early on in his career he was coached by the great Bill Russell. Things didn't work out and eventually DJ was coached by Hall of Famer Lenny Wilkins who was able to maximize DJ and they went on to win the 1979 NBA title where he won the NBA Finals MVP. After maximizing his time in Seattle he ended up with the Suns where he never reached that title glory. 

     Then Red Auerbach came calling and traded for DJ. When asked about the trade DJ said " Dream Come True" and when asked about Red he said " living history". When he came to the Celtics he was established as their point guard and boy did he flourish. He became the Celtics glue man! 

     In the 1984 Finals DJ smothered the great Magic Johnson which later lead to the moniker Tragic Johnson! Talk about an impact on the floor when you can shut down one of the greatest players of all time. When DJ announced his retirement Magic sent a telegram which said to the "best backcourt defender of all time". High praise for sure. 

     During the 87 playoffs vs the Pistons DJ was part of one of the most iconic plays and calls of all time in NBA history. Down by one the Pistons took the ball out and as Johnny Most said " steal by Bird underneath to DJ who lays in in"! That moment is burned into Celtics fans brains! Pistons fans too! When asked about DJ Larry Bird said " best teammate ever"

      A three time champ, five time All Star, and six time All Defensive First team player. His number 3 hangs in the rafters of the beloved Boston Celtics. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2010. For anyone who watched DJ play can say he was clutch, defensively one of the all time best and one of the best teammates you could ask for. 

     When you remember DJ you remember a skilled player who gave it his all on the floor. A guy who adapted his game when he came to the Celtics and put in the best years of his career. He made big plays on both ends of the floor. Whether is was a defensive stop or a key shot DJ was your guy. How lucky Celtics fans were to have him don the green and white.
 

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