Five years later: Looking back at Banner 17

Five years later: Looking back at Banner 17
June 17, 2013, 11:15 am
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June 17, 2013 marks the five-year anniversary of the Boston Celtics 2008 NBA Championship. While it may only seem like a few seasons ago in a city rooted in deep history, time has quickly passed since start of the "New Big Three Era." As rumors buzz around the talks of Doc Rivers, Paul Pierce, and Kevin Garnett leaving the Celtics this offseason, it is easy to forget just how long this core has been together.

Take a look at the 2008 team that defeated the Los Angeles Lakers, 131-92, in Game 6 at TD Garden and see where the title-winning players are now.


Kevin Garnett: Garnett had been loyal to the Minnesota Timberwolves for the first 12 seasons of his career prior to being traded to the Celtics in the summer of 2007. He infused defensive intensity into his new team and led the Celtics in points (20.4) and rebounds (10.5) during the 2008 playoffs. The 37-year-old Garnett surpassed 25,000 points scored this season and still remains the defensive backbone of the C's.

Paul Pierce: The Celtics captain played nine seasons in Boston, including a 24-win campaign in 2006-07, before winning it all in 2008. He was named NBA Finals MVP following a gritty postseason performance which included a dramatic return from a knee injury. Pierce, 35, is currently the Celtics' second-leading scorer in franchise history behind only John Havlicek.

Rajon Rondo: In only in his second NBA season and first postseason at the time, Rondo proved he had the talent to run the floor of a veteran championship team. Now 27, he is a four-time NBA All-Star and one of the top guards in the league. If Garnett and Pierce do not return next season, Rondo would be the only remaining player from the 2008 squad.


Ray Allen: Sharpshooting Allen knocked down 55 three-pointers and shot a team-high 91 percent from the free-throw line during the 2008 playoffs. He played the following four seasons in Boston and signed with the Miami Heat during free agency last summer. Now coming off the bench, the 37-year-old Allen is currently competing in the 2013 NBA Finals against the San Antonio Spurs.

Tony Allen: Allen was one of the Celtics best lockdown defenders during their championship run, proving the value of committed role players. He spent a total of six seasons in Boston before signing with the Memphis Grizzlies in 2010. Allen was the top vote-getter in this season's NBA All-Defensive Team selections.

Glen Davis: Davis earned minutes in the Celtics veteran-heavy rotation in spite of being a rookie at the time. After four years in Boston, during which he established himself as the Celtics sixth man, he was traded to the Orlando Magic. This season he started in all but one game before suffering a broken foot.

Kendrick Perkins: The center protected the paint with his defensive focus and trademark scowl throughout the 2008 title quest. After Perkins suffered a knee injury in Game 6 of the 2010 Finals, many still speculate if the Celtics would have won another title that season had he been healthy. The C's traded Perkins to the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2011 in the Jeff Green deal.


P.J. Brown: Brown had not played during the 2007-08 season before signing with the Celtics less than two months prior the start of the playoffs. The 38-year-old center provided key postseason contributions off the bench and ended his 15-year career with a title.

Sam Cassell: After being waived by the Los Angeles Clippers in late February 2008, Cassell signed with the Celtics to offer veteran backup point guard experience, which included two championships with the Houston Rockets. Now he is sharing the same knowledge from the sidelines as an assistant coach for the Washington Wizards.

Eddie House: The veteran guard never hesitated to pull up for a big shot and helped spark the deep Celtics bench. He was traded to the New York Knicks in 2010 and played his final NBA season for the Miami Heat in 2011.

Scot Pollard: The 6-11 center had appeared in nine straight postseasons before joining the Celtics for the 2007-08 season. He capped off his 11-season career with a championship in Boston.

James Posey: Posey came to the Celtics with one championship from the 2006 Miami Heat and was a key piece to the C's 2008 victory. As one of the team's top perimeter players, he was willing to play tough defense or sacrifice his body for a loose ball. He signed a four-year deal with the New Orleans Hornets in the summer of 2008 and last played for the Indiana Pacers in 2011.

Leon Powe: Powe played beyond his 49th draft pick, earning minutes in the Celtics front court off the bench. The image of Kevin Garnett standing over Powe and screaming in excitement after Powe made a dunk and drew a foul in the first round against the Atlanta Hawks was illustrative of the Celtics intensity that season. He most recently participated on the Chicago Bulls summer league team last year.

Gabe Pruitt: A rookie guard on a deep veteran team, Pruitt saw sparse minutes in the playoffs but won a championship his first year in the NBA. Pruitt has since played overseas and in the NBA Development League, including a stint with the Celtics affiliate Maine Red Claws.

Brian Scalabrine: A fan-favorite, Scalabrine did not play during the 2008 Finals, yet delivered one of the most memorable postgame press conferences -- "Maybe now you can say I didn't play a second, but in five years you guys are going to forget. In 10 years, I'll still be a champ. In 20 years, I'll tell my kids I probably started. And in 30 years, I'll probably tell them I got the MVP, so I'm really not to worried about it." Scalabrine played another four seasons for the Celtics and Chicago Bulls and is currently an NBA television analyst.