Throwback Thursday: Boston Celtics vs. Milwaukee Bucks, 1987 ECSF Game 4


Welcome back to Throwback Thursday.

Today we travel back to 1987 for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals that featured the Boston Celtics vs. the Milwaukee Bucks. Let’s get into it.

Box Score.


@bbeebe: right away I’m transported back to middle school.  The head shots of the Celtics starting 5 reminds me so much of playing Tecmo NBA Basketball. I need a controller, a 2 – liter of Mountain Dew and a bean bag chair STAT!

First quarter

@DonnieBuckets: Jack Sikma’s Intro Photo is HOF worthy. Off to a good start

@wshareNBA: Jack’s back-to-the-basket game is pretty SIKma IMO

@bbeebe: is there any NBA fan who wouldn’t pay big,  big money for those silver satin ref jackets?

@DonnieBuckets: Joey Crawford’s petitioning for the ref intro photo to be re-introduced

@TaylorBojangles: Bird gonna take and swish the worst shot in basketball because he DGAF

@DonnieBuckets: All classic games feature a carrying violation one minute in.

@TaylorBojangles: Bird dribbling around for 20 seconds before hoisting a contested 3. 1 year old JR Smith is #inspired

@DonnieBuckets: If Danny Ainge was GM of this team, he’d have traded himself for a combo guard for sure.

@DonnieBuckets: You cannot stop Jack Sikma out of Illinois Wesleyan you can only hope to contain him!

@bbeebe: I miss hearing about “breaking news” from someone 2,000 miles away from it via a television rather than someone 2,000 miles away from it on Twitter

@bbeebe: It’s almost jarring to see 5 guys with white socks and white shoes play 5 guys with white socks and black shoes. I feel like Paul Lukas would have a weird tingly feeling watching this game right now.

@TaylorBojangles: 70 year old Rob Parish can still dunk

@TaylorBojangles: Moncrief from the high school 3 point line!

@TaylorBojangles: McHale bounding down the floor like a guy whose ankle isn’t fused to his shin

@TaylorBojangles: Moncrief heat check from the high school line!

@TaylorBojangles: Bird seems a bit out of sorts here. Rushed a bad pass when the Bucks brought the double

@bbeebe: I defy any coach to wear a flower on their suit coat in a NBA game in 2015. No, really,  I need to see it.

@TaylorBojangles: The one fan you can hear in the arena is super adamant about the lack of lane violation enforcement, it seems

@TaylorBojangles: Do the Bucks know that the longer line is the NBA three-point line?

@wshareNBA: PRE$$EY

@DonnieBuckets: Who’d be the funniest player in these shorts today? Big Baby?

@bbeebe: Celtics switch everything early,  but with such a huge front line and a big 2 guard in DJ, they seemed to get away with it.

@wshareNBA: This would be a pretty terrific Mean Tweets reaction meme if Bill went on Kimmel in 1987.

walton /

@bbeebe: Paul Mokeski playoff per-game averages–3 rebounds,  2 points,  and 1 hellacious mustache.

@DonnieBuckets: I’m not saying Robert Parish if he was still playing at 61 would still be good. But if I could sign him or Greg Stiemsma?

@bbeebe: Simply perfect organ music.

@TaylorBojangles: Sikma with the single worst shot attempt of the entire 1980s

@bbeebe: Bird LIVES on the right side of the floor offensively.  Is there a modern – day wing who is so heavy on one side of the floor?

@TaylorBojangles: Each team brings in its goofy-looking big white guys. Celts down a crucial goofy-looking white guy with Walton out injured

@bbeebe: oh my goodness–kite, breuer and sikma on the floor at the same time????? I was hoping this game would get more unathletic!

@DonnieBuckets: Another unforced turnover by Milwaukee. At least it isn’t a close game and this doesn’t come back to haunt them.

@bbeebe: Must quickly Google “Chambers 2 handed dunk”

@wshareNBA: Think I just heard Larry yell “straight cash homie” after coming off that pin-down

@bbeebe: Bird stepback 20 footer.  His footwork off screens is amazing.

@DonnieBuckets: The Bucks are stunned that Larry Bird is a good shooter, apparently.

@DonnieBuckets: I wish we still called people wily veterans. Can we go back to that?

@bbeebe: Wait, McHale went into the stands to fight a fan during a playoff game?  Why won’t CBS show the footage?

@wshareNBA: McHale’s like that stereotypical high school bully who just waits for freshmen in the senior hallway with his legs extended

@DonnieBuckets: Sidney Moncrief. Underrated Player. Underrated ‘Stache. #respect

@bbeebe: Pace of this game is so fun to watch.

@TaylorBojangles: Kinda crazy how the Celtics are just abandoning the three-point line to double and triple-team guys in the post. You do you, 80s

@DonnieBuckets: Kite not flying high for that rebound #nailedit

@DonnieBuckets: McHale’s footwork though. I tried the things he does against Yi’s chair and fell down

Second quarter

@TaylorBojangles: Not-at-all creepy segment with Isiah Thomas seemingly hitting on basketball with sexy background music

@bbeebe: just got chills from the NBA,  it’s FANtastic commercial.  I loved those as a kid!

@bbeebe: Maybe it’s me, but the crowd seems really dead. I guess 14 first quarter points from Larry Bird will do that?


@DonnieBuckets: Was there clever jokes made about dudes named Kite and Bird being on the same team? Missed opportunity if no

@DonnieBuckets: Paul Pressey probably thrilled his son now plays for Danny Ainge. Opponents loved that guy

@bbeebe: I always wondered if Fred Roberts stole Detlef Schrempf’s haircut or vice versa.

@wshareNBA: Hey 28% from the field seems bad you guys

@TaylorBojangles: Major advantage for the Bucks in the male pattern baldness department

@wshareNBA: Wow, Boston really bring the full-court Pressey on Paul (I’ll show myself out)

@DonnieBuckets: These Pressey free throws are tough to watch.

@DonnieBuckets: Anyone ask McHale how he’s kept the same expression on his face for 30+ years?

@TaylorBojangles: Ricky Pierce’s free throw routine hurts my back

@wshareNBA: Good to see Boston really picking up the pace so they can dump it off to Larry for another high post-up and iso. This is clearly the most creative era in the history of basketball.

@DonnieBuckets: Seriously, James Harden watches this second quarter at least once a week and dreams of that whistle.

@TaylorBojangles: Feels like a video error whenever Bird misses a jumper

@DonnieBuckets: What did people do before the score was up all the time? I’ve lost track like 40 times already

@DonnieBuckets: Everything Paul Mokeski does is glorious. Every. Single. Thing.

@TaylorBojangles: Bucks are giving up too many second chance opps

@DonnieBuckets: If Ainge touched Joey Crawford like that, he’d get three T’s.

@wshareNBA: Spacing is fun

spacing /

@DonnieBuckets: Seems to me this Bird guy is one of the better players on the Celtics.

@DonnieBuckets: John Lucas outchea taking names! He never hit a stepback on LBJ, though, so his son wins.

@DonnieBuckets: We’ve had like a hundred buddy cop films since the ‘80s and no one even TRIED Lucas and Mokeski?

@DonnieBuckets: Greg Norman near the top of the leaderboard? Bet it ended well for him

@DonnieBuckets: Lol at that foul call. Maybe Joey was reffing this game

@TaylorBojangles: Bird channeling his inner Kevin Love who may not even be alive yet!

@bbeebe: Those Lakers highlights were amazing.  Man they played fast.

@bbeebe: Riley. Hair immaculate.  Tie perfect.  Smile bright.

@bbeebe: Nice of CBS to give Tim Brandt a great seat in Studio 96E for these highlights.

@bbeebe: Was Clyde dying his hair then too?

@bbeebe: Holy crap what an amazing HOF class.

Third quarter

@TaylorBojangles: The Bucks have been hitting at a good clip, but the discrepancy in shot quality is noticeable here. Celtics getting more easy looks

@DonnieBuckets: So appropriate that the only stat shared from the Pistons-Hawks game was that Rick Mahorn had 13 rebounds.

@wshareNBA: Jack Sikma: So much largeness, such sparing confidence

@DonnieBuckets: I refuse to believe Fred Roberts is the best player on this Celtics bench that’s active. This is an all-time team, right?


@DonnieBuckets: Pretty good start for the Celts in the 2nd half IMO. 82 percent shooting is solid

@DonnieBuckets: Craig Hodges always did have a solid strut

@wshareNBA: 23 points on 12 shots in the mid-third? #LetLarryBeLarry

@TaylorBojangles: BUCKS AND-ONE PARTY

@TaylorBojangles: Feels like every Celtics bench guy is a 2k create-a-player

@wshareNBA: Who says this isn’t the #pointz era? Players only care about padding their stats, no heart smh

@DonnieBuckets: This game…not so much with the defense.

@wshareNBA: one thing this game needs more of is limited off-ball movement and dribble pull-ups from 16 feet

@TaylorBojangles: The Mecca is alive for the first time. They go bonkers for the foot-on-the-line two

@TaylorBojangles: Hodges #flameemoji

@DonnieBuckets: Craig Hodges has good form. If they had a contest where contestants shot threes, he should enter. Bet he’d do well.

Fourth quarter

@TaylorBojangles: OLD BANGO ALERT #stillpantsless

@wshareNBA: League Pass would come in handy tonight. How am I supposed to miss Hawks-Pistons going down to the wire?

@DonnieBuckets: This is back when men were men, and PUJITs weren’t judged by punks with keyboards

@TaylorBojangles: Moncrief with his 52nd long two attempt of the game. This is Daryl Morey’s nightmare

@DonnieBuckets: Huuuuuuuuuuuuuubie!!

@DonnieBuckets: Rivers hit both free throws but traded one of the points for Jordan Farmar

@TaylorBojangles: This #WaltonFace needs to be a meme

@DonnieBuckets: Bill Walton’s expressions get more hilarious as the game goes on

@TaylorBojangles: Danny Ainge was Teen Wolf and you can’t convince me otherwise

@TaylorBojangles: Pretty sure the Mecca organist knows one song only

@DonnieBuckets: The more I see Don Nelson frustrated, the more I’m convinced Brian Dennehy was cast as the wrong coach

@TaylorBojangles: John Lucas leads the world in jump passes and mustache hairs

@TaylorBojangles: Pressey’s free throw routine is like a TV infomercial about how not to shoot a free throw

@DonnieBuckets: How do you guard Kevin McHale with these rules? Answer: Not well

@DonnieBuckets: Paul Pressey goin’ UP on a (whatever day this is)

@wshareNBA: Paul Pressey starts in Yam City; coming this fall

@DonnieBuckets: Oh, yeah, his replacement is the GOAT #mokeskifever

@wshareNBA: Bucks should go small with Sikma fouling out, McHale and Parish will kill them on the glass regardless

/brings in Paul Mokeski

like, sure

@DonnieBuckets: Just a terrible foul. This is why the Celtics never won anything.

@wshareNBA: just spent 10 minutes waiting for a botched Danny Ainge dribble-drive. 1987 is LIT. Don’t mind free basketball though

@DonnieBuckets: Mokeski’s veins are as cold as Busch Light.

@TaylorBojangles: MoKLUTCHski

@wshareNBA: Nothing says overtime playoff ball like dribbling out three quarters of the shot clock and dishing for a contested long two, John Lucas.

First overtime


@DonnieBuckets: Ainge with a flop that would make Chris Paul blush.

@DonnieBuckets: It’s almost like Mokeski can’t guard Bird


@TaylorBojangles: B3RD

@DonnieBuckets: Larry plays like a Legend of sorts

@DonnieBuckets: Mokeski SWAT! #clutchdontlie

@TaylorBojangles: Don’t think that’s a clear path

@DonnieBuckets: Probably the most graceful moment of Mokeski’s career. And then he wipes out

@TaylorBojangles: Great defense to force the tough shot for Cummings

@DonnieBuckets: Dennis Johnson may have just committed a flagrant on a teammate

@DonnieBuckets: Larry Bird’s fistpump was so Indiana.

@TaylorBojangles: BIRD ONIONS

@wshareNBA: Larry Bird: good at making jump shots. Meanwhile, poor Bill Walton’s like “put me in coach”

@DonnieBuckets: That quick release at that height made Bird who he was

@DonnieBuckets: I haven’t mentioned Terry Cummings yet, but, what a game from him. Roasting this Boston frontline is no easy task

Second overtime

@TaylorBojangles: Kinda surprised Boston has gone away from McHale of late. Wonder if they’ll explore that here

@DonnieBuckets: I love how Johnson sprinted after that ball to try and save it, then pointed like it was out on Milwaukee

@TaylorBojangles: Terry Cummings MAN MOVE

@DonnieBuckets: Terry Cummings again! What a finish!

@DonnieBuckets: The reason I don’t mention Cummings more is he reminds me that Depaul Basketball was good at one time and that makes me sad.

@DonnieBuckets: Aing333333

@TaylorBojangles: OH MY AING3

@DonnieBuckets: THEY FOULED MY MAN OUT ON THAT???!!! #Mokeskimoproblems

@TaylorBojangles: And now Mokeski is gone. Gotta feed McHale, right?

@DonnieBuckets: YGTMYFTEI2OT

@TaylorBojangles: Kinda starting to think neither team is going to win this game

@DonnieBuckets: We all knew this was coming down to Darren Daye

@TaylorBojangles: MCHALE SWAT


@TaylorBojangles: Oh no, John Lucas. Don’t jump pass!

@DonnieBuckets: Don Nelson losing because his team couldn’t execute in transition must have almost killed him

@DonnieBuckets: Milwaukee didn’t lose this in 7 games after losing this, did they? OKAY TIME TO GO NOW BYE

@wshareNBA: Yikes. That one sucks for Milwaukee, they had a real good shot at that. Pressey and Moncrief combined for 42, but only so much you can do when Larry scores 42 on his own.