How Celtics honored Bill Walton at Game 1 of NBA Finals

How Celtics honored Bill Walton at Game 1 of NBA Finals originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

With emotions already high ahead of tip-off for Game 1 of the NBA Finals at TD Garden, the Boston Celtics took the time to honor the life and legacy of one of their own: 1986 champion Bill Walton.

Walton, who lost his battle to cancer at the age of 71 last month — was a Basketball Hall of Famer, a two-time NCAA champion at UCLA, a two-time NBA champion (the other won with the Portland Trail Blazers in 1977, when he won Finals MVP), and a league MVP before becoming an Emmy-winning broadcaster.

Prior to the National Anthem for Thursday night’s Game 1 matchup, the Celtics took the time to recognize Walton’s family in attendance before rolling a tribute video for the franchise legend. The video featured scenes of Walton’s two seasons with the Celtics, including highlights from the 1985-86 championship-winning season in which Walton won the Sixth Man of the Year award.

You can watch the full tribute in the video player above.

Boston also paid tribute to Walton by handing out pins with his name on them to the crowd, while Celtics players wore warmup shirts bearing his name just before tip-off.

“The (Celtics) team was looking for a way to honor him tonight, and in addition to a pregame moment, the (Celtics) players are going to be wearing a special Bill Walton shooting shirt. … We’re happy about that,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said of the tribute in his press conference at TD Garden before Game 1.

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