Fall Premier Auction 2020

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Harry Mangurian (1926-2008) was the founder of a successful furniture store franchise and later real estate developer in Florida. In the 1970s, Mangurian branched out into sports team ownership, buying into a NASL soccer team and the Buffalo Braves NBA team, swapping the latter for a piece of the Boston Celtics in 1978. A year later he was the sole owner of the Celtics and began assembling the team that would win the 1981 NBA Championship. This proved to be more difficult than it seemed, as the 1980-81 season looked to be over before it even began when Dave Cowens unexpectedly retired just before training camp ended. However, General Manger Red Auerbach had hoarded draft picks, and after an elaborate round of trades, came out with center Robert Parish and power forward Kevin McHale – both future NBA Hall of Famers. These two budding stars joined Larry Bird, Chris Ford and Nate Archibald on one of the most dominant teams ever to wear the Celtics colors. Still, the Atlantic Division was a grudge match between Boston and Philadelphia, won on the final day of the season by the Celtics. After sweeping the Chicago Bulls in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, Boston faced Philadelphia again, this time in the Eastern Conference Finals. The 76ers took the lead after four games, but the Celtics evened the series with back-to-back 2-point wins in Games 5 and 6. Larry Birds dramatic jump shot late in Game 7 gave Boston the 91-90 edge and a slot in the Finals. Facing a regular season 40-42 Houston squad, Boston set the pace in Game 1 when Larry Bird made his iconic play of following his missed jump up with a leaping rebound, switching the ball from his right hand to his left just as his body went out of bounds, scoring a miraculous basket. Houston managed to make the Finals interesting by winning Games 2 and 4, but it was Boston that took home the Championship, 4 games to 2. This is the championship ring issued to the Celtics owner, Harry Mangurian. “NBA WORLD CHAMPIONS” surrounds the perimeter of the ring’s face surrounding a green stone with a diamond at its center. The right shank has an enamel green clover with “XIV CELTICS” in gold with a gold ribbon engraved with “MANGURIAN” above and a chevron with “PRIDE” below. The opposite shank has the NBA logo with “1981” and a chevron engraved with “TEAMWORK” below. The interior has been stamped with the Balfour 14K hallmark. The ring shows good use by the Celtics owner, with some surface scuffing and dings, though none of this affects the engraving or enamel which remains clear and bright. An awesome piece of NBA history owned and worn by the man responsible for bringing championship basketball back to Boston. Weight: 22 grams. Size: 9.

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