On Sunday, July 28th Comcast in New England will premier a show marking the 20th anniversary of Reggie Lewis’ death. The death rocked the city, and left the Boston Celtics' franchise in disarray, as he appeared to be the building block for the future.
Many remember Len Bias’ death in 1986 following his draft, but fans in their late 20’s and early 30’s will more likely remember watching Reggie Lewis collapse in Charlotte in a 1993 playoff game. That game was looking like his coming out party, scoring 10 points in the first three minutes of the game.
Here at Celtics 101, we thought it was worth taking a moment from the 2013 Celtics' Summer to look back at Reggie Lewis and his career over the next few days.
It seems like the 1987 NBA Draft is a great place to start. While it does not have a lot of Reggie in it, it shows Red Auerbach discussing Reggie and shows his highlight reel. A fun watch, even just for the memories of the 1980’s and how far TV coverage and sports have come.
Let's take a look:
00:31- A fantastic shot of the three analysts here. Look at all the paper! Look how little space they have. They literally cannot even write things down comfortably. Imagine Ernie Johnson, Kenny Smith, Charles Barkley, and Shaq sharing a desk like this.
00:47- It sounds like the analysts are being played through the speakers in the Felt Forum. Is this still the case in 2013 but now the technology is better? Can someone let us know.
1:01- If you aren’t sure about Dunbar, here are the guys that Reggie Lewis played with in high school: Reggie Williams (picked fourth in 1987 draft), Tyrone “Muggsy” Bogues, (picked 12th in 1987) , and David Wingate (picked 44th in 1986).
Needless to say, Reggie was prepared to be a back-up once he got to Boston.
1:41- This clip was probably the first highlight that most Celtics fans had seen of Reggie Lewis. At first glance he’s rail thin, and all arms and legs. 6’7” and 183 pounds. To put that into perspective, Paul Pierce is listed at the same height. But weighs 235 pounds.
Rick Barry said, “He doesn’t have a lot of upper body strength.” If Lewis was drafted in 2013, they would just say he’s “long.” Times have changed.
Lewis also had a hitch in his jumper, but it seemed un-blockable due to his long arms. He was very smooth in the clips, moving around the court as if he was floating.
The best quote from this entire clip, “He knows where the hoop is.”
Let’s hope the 2013-14 also know where the hoop is.
3:40- Auerbach just broke the news that Kevin McHale had surgery, yet another difference between 1987 and 2013.
5:00- Sorry Seattle…
5:31- A pretty stacked draft in the long-run.
Well, there you have it. The 1987 Draft was Boston's intro to Reggie Lewis.
Check back in later today for the next video of Reggie Lewis. This time, looking at his movement towards prominence on the Celtics roster.
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