Skip to content
Read the Celtics’ statement on the passing of Bill Russell


“Bill was a champion like no other in the history of team sports.”

Bill Russell in 2014 discusses using his platform in basketball to raise awareness for civil rights. Jack Plunkett/AP Photo

The Celtics changed their Twitter photo to a “6” to acknowledge Bill Russell and released a statement in his honor following the Celtics legend’s death at 88 on Sunday.

Here is the message from the organization:

“Being the greatest champion in your sport, revolutionizing the way the game is played and being a leader of society all at once seems unthinkable, but that’s what Bill Russell was,” the Celtics said.

“Bill was a champion unparalleled in team sports history – 11-time NBA champion, including eight consecutive titles, five-time MVP, Olympic gold medalist and the NBA’s first black head coach.

“Bill Russell’s DNA is woven through every element of the Celtics organization, from the relentless pursuit of excellence, to the celebration of team awards over individual glory, to a commitment to social justice and civil rights off the field.

“Our thoughts are with his family as we mourn his passing and celebrate his tremendous legacy in basketball, Boston and beyond.”

Here is the statement from Wyc Grousbeck, Steve Pagliuca and the Celtics ownership group:

“Bill embodied character and commitment and he was truly one of the best people to ever live. He will be remembered forever and rightly so.

Many other NBA members also expressed their condolences.


Not all news on the site expresses the point of view of the site, but we transmit this news automatically and translate it through programmatic technology on the site and not from a human editor.