The fact that the Boston Celtics are vying for another world championship banner to hoist to the rafters at the TD Garden should come as no surprise to New England sports fans and anyone else who occupies the six-state region.

The Celtics are tied with the Los Angeles Lakers for the most NBA championships with 17. They hold the record for the most recorded wins of any team in the NBA. The team has a storied history.

The Celtics compete in the National Basketball Association's Eastern Conference as part of the Atlantic Division. The team, one of the NBA's eight original teams, was founded on June 6, 1946 by Walter A. Brown, president of the Boston Garden-Arena Corporation.

WBSM-AM/AM 1420 logo
Get our free mobile app

Game 1 of the NBA Finals between the Boston Celtics and Dallas Mavericks will occur on June 6, 2024, the 78th anniversary of the Celtic's founding.

The Celtics began in the Basketball Association of America (BAA) in the 1946-47 season. Their first coach was John "Honey" Russell. They finished fifth in the Eastern Division that first season with a 22-38 record.

In 1949, the National Basketball League merged with the BAA, forming the National Basketball Association.

How The Boston Celtics Got Their Name
Getty Images

According to, "Celtic refers to a group of languages that belong to a particular branch of the Indo-European language family."

The site says, "It may also refer to the culture of the people who speak these languages" and adds, "Irish refers to one particular Celtic language and culture."

Most know Boston has a large Irish population and a rich Irish culture and history. So it is not surprising the city has a professional sports franchise with an Irish connection.

Where did the name "Boston Celtics" come from, though?

According to the Boston Irish Tourism Association (BITA), team owner Walter Brown and his "public relations guy, Howie McHugh, were throwing out potential nicknames, including the Whirlwinds, Unicorns, and Olympics."

BITA says, 'It was Brown who had the epiphany, saying, "Wait, I've got it – the Celtics."

The Celtics were named after the 1920s Original Celtics basketball team based in New York City.

The Boston Celtics played home games at Boston Garden until it was demolished and replaced with the TD Garden.

The 13 Most Hated Boston Celtics of All Time

Boston's most celebrated franchise has also produced a number of players New Englanders still despise.

Gallery Credit: Jon Rineman

Boston Celtics Who Went Hollywood

Celtics legends who starred in film and television.

Gallery Credit: Jon Rineman

More From WBSM-AM/AM 1420