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The Brooklyn Nets are an American professional basketball team based in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. The Nets compete in the National BasketballThe Brooklyn Nets are an American professional basketball team based in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. The Nets compete in the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a member of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference. The team plays its home games at Barclays Center. They are one of two NBA teams located in New York City; the other is the New York Knicks. The club was established in 1967 as a charter franchise of the NBA's rival league, the American Basketball Association (ABA). They played in New Jersey as the New Jersey Americans during their first season, before relocating to Long Island, New York, in 1968 and changing their name to the New York Nets. During this time, the Nets won two ABA championships (in 1974 and 1976). In 1976, the ABA merged with the NBA, and the Nets were absorbed into the NBA along with three other ABA teams (the San Antonio Spurs, Indiana Pacers, and Denver Nuggets), all of whom remain in the league to this day. In 1977, the team returned to New Jersey and played as the New Jersey Nets from 1977 to 2012. Led by star point guard Jason Kidd, the Nets reached the finals of two consecutive NBA seasons (2001–02 and 2002–03), but failed to win either title. In the summer of 2012, the team moved to Barclays Center in Brooklyn, becoming the first major sports franchise in the borough since the departure of the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team in 1957. Since moving to Brooklyn, the Nets have qualified for the playoffs on six occasions, including trips to the Conference Semifinals in 2014 and 2021.
The Boston Celtics (/ˈsɛltɪks/ SEL-tiks) are an American professional basketball team based in Boston. The Celtics compete in the National Basketball AssociationThe Boston Celtics ( SEL-tiks) are an American professional basketball team based in Boston. The Celtics compete in the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a member of the league's Eastern Conference Atlantic Division. Founded in 1946 as one of the league's original eight teams, the Celtics play their home games at TD Garden, which they share with the National Hockey League's Boston Bruins. The Celtics are regarded as one of the most successful basketball teams in NBA history; the franchise is tied with the Los Angeles Lakers for most NBA Championships won with 17 (accounting for 23.6 percent of all NBA championships since the league's founding) and currently holds the record for the most recorded wins of any NBA team.The Celtics have a notable rivalry with the Los Angeles Lakers, which was heavily highlighted throughout the 1960s and 1980s. During the two teams' many match-ups in the 1980s, the Celtics' star, Larry Bird, and the Lakers' star, Magic Johnson, had an ongoing feud. The franchise has played the Lakers a record 12 times in the NBA Finals (including their most recent appearances in 2008 and 2010), of which the Celtics have won nine. Four Celtics players (Bob Cousy, Bill Russell, Dave Cowens and Larry Bird) have won the NBA Most Valuable Player Award for an NBA record total of 10 MVP awards. Both the nickname "Celtics" and their mascot "Lucky the Leprechaun" are a nod to Boston's historically large Irish population, and also to the Original Celtics, a marquee team prior to the NBA.The Celtics' rise to dominance began in the late 1950s, after coach Red Auerbach acquired center Bill Russell, who would become the cornerstone of the Celtics dynasty, in a draft-day trade in 1956. Led by Russell and point guard Bob Cousy, the Celtics won their first NBA championship in 1957. Russell, along with a talented supporting cast of future Hall of Famers including John Havlicek, Tom Heinsohn, K. C. Jones, Sam Jones, Satch Sanders, and Bill Sharman, would usher the Celtics into the greatest period in franchise history, winning eight consecutive NBA championships from 1959 to 1966. After Russell retired in 1969, the team entered a period of rebuilding. In the mid-1970s, the Celtics became contenders once again, winning two championships in 1974 and 1976 under the leadership of center Dave Cowens and point guard JoJo White. In the 1980s, the Celtics returned to dominance, as well as renewed competition with the "Showtime" Lakers, who were led by Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Anchored by the "Big Three" of Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, and Robert Parish, the Celtics won championships in 1981, 1984, and 1986. The team defeated the Lakers in the 1984 Finals, but lost to Los Angeles in 1985 and 1987. After the departure of Parish as a free agent and the retirement of both Bird and McHale, the team struggled through the 1990s and much of the early 2000s. It was not until the Celtics assembled a new "Big Three" of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Ray Allen that they found success once again. Under the leadership of head coach Doc Rivers, the team beat the Lakers to win a championship in 2008, but lost to Los Angeles in a seven-game series in 2010, the latest Finals matchup between the two ancient rivals. By the start of the 2013–14 season, none of the new "Big Three" were still with the team. Garnett and Pierce were traded away to the Brooklyn Nets, while Allen left as a free agent. After a period of rebuilding, the Celtics became a force again under head coach Brad Stevens. During the 2016-17 season, the Celtics clinched the top seed in the Eastern Conference, but were eliminated in the Conference Finals. Led by Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, the team returned to the Conference Finals in 2018 and 2020, but were eliminated both times.