For many fans of the NBA and Boston Celtics, the legend of Hall of Fame Celtics big man Bill Russell is a name from the distant past, an apocryphal figure whose 11 titles and 5 MVP awards were from a long time ago in a league that was very different.
But for the NBA itself and the Celtics organization, in particular, the presence of Russell was never far even in the years that Russell was out of the public eye, for the most part, the Boston great’s support and mentorship of players and coaches continued on . The Celtics in particular benefitted from his love of the organization if not the city, and several related how his influence affected their own careers.
Watch the video embedded below to hear from Doc Rivers and Kendrick Perkins about Russell’s impact on them and the 2008 Banner 17 title team.
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Story originally appeared on Celtics Wire