I was going to write an article about this when I had a little time, but it seems like Shaughnessy beat me to it. From the Globe:
So now he's in the discussion. Best Celtics Starting Five of All Time. Top Celtics team of all time. It's a popular parlor game whenever two or more Celtics fans gather around a table of green beer. The estimable Bob Ryan (wish he wasn't so shy on TV) remembers conducting a Globe reader poll on the subject in 1973 when Larry Siegfried was part of the discussion.
Sorry, Siggy, you're out of the mix. But Pierce is now trying out for a spot on the All-Time Celtics starting five - which is akin to joining Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, and Mickey Mantle in Yankee lore.
Russell, Bird, Havlicek, and Cousy always get the nod. And please don't go all
Comcaston us and try to bump Cooz from the starting five just because he was only 6 feet 1 inch and retired in 1963. Cousy was the face of the NBA for 13 seasons. He was Mr. Basketball. He's still the franchise's all-time assist king and he's top five in points, games, and minutes. Cooz never made a three, but that shouldn't work against him.
Pierce could be the fifth starter on this team - unless you'd rather go with Kevin McHale and move Havlicek to the backcourt.
McHale is one of the most interesting names in this argument. He's among the most underrated players in NBA history. Given his unique skills, there are some who would put McHale on a list of the top 12 players in NBA history, but that's a discussion for another day. For today, we'll let you choose between Pierce and McHale as the starter on the Celtics Dream Team.