On this day: Jones, Heinsohn draft; Russell swap; Rivers hire; Bass born; Tatum gets 60

On this day in Boston Celtics history, veteran center Ed Macauley and small forward Cliff Hagan were traded to the (then) St. Louis (now, Atlanta) Hawks for the second pick in the 1956 NBA draft, which the Celtics would use to select legendary big man Bill Russell. Boston negotiated from a position of strength; head coach and GM Red Auerbach leveraged his relationship with Hawks owner Ben Kerner — a former employer.

Auerbach convinced Celtics owner Walter Brown to lend the (then) Rochester Royals (now, Sacramento Kings) the Ice Capades for a week. The Ice Capades, also owned by Brown, were one of the most popular attractions filling arenas at that time. Mercifully for Boston, there was no Collective Bargaining Agreement to prevent the Royals, who held the first overall pick, from taking Russell first — the other end of the bargain that got the legendary center to the Celtics.

It was in the same draft that the Celtics also took Dan Swartz, Tommy Heinsohn, and KC Jones.

Swartz, a small forward drafted out of Morehead State, would not play for the Celtics until the 1962-63 NBA season, winning a championship in his sole season with Boston.

He would average 4.5 points, 2.3 rebounds, and 0.5 assists per game over that stretch.

Unknown date; Los Angeles, CA, USA; FILE PHOTO; Los Angeles Lakers center Gene Wiley (12) defends Boston Celtics guard K.C. Jones (25) at the Los Angeles Sports Arena. Mandatory Credit: Darryl Norenberg-USA TODAY Sports

Point guard K.C. Jones, a college teammate of Russell at the University of San Francisco, was taken with the first pick of the second round and would go on to win eight championships with the Celtics among many other honors.

Jones recorded a career 7.4 points, 3.5 boards, and 4.3 assists per game average over nine seasons with Boston, the only team he played for in the NBA.

Boston Celtics’ Tommy Heinsohn (15) gets off a hook shot as Los Angeles Lakers’ Ray Felix attempts to block in the third quarter of their NBA basketball game at the Boston Garden, in this April 18, 1962 file photo in Boston. (AP Photo).

Big man Tommy Heinsohn was taken by the Celtics with their territorial pick out of Holy Cross.

Heinsohn would go on to become a Celtics institution, also hanging eight banners and being elected to six All-Star teams among other honors, and maintaining a close relationship with the team up to his death in 2020.

11/12/1984 President Reagan Patrick Ewing and John Thompson during a photo Op for the cover of Sports Illustrated in the Map Room

It is also the date of the 1966 expansion draft, which saw Boston send forwards Ron Bonham and John Thompson to the newly-formed Chicago Bulls.

The frontcourt duo was left unprotected and taken to populate the roster of the Bulls, who were replacing the defunct Chicago Stags.

Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers, center, talks with players, from left to right, Kendrick Perkins, Rajon Rondo, Shaquille O’Neal (36), Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce (34), Ray Allen, and Glen Davis during practice in Waltham, Mass. Monday, Oct. 25, 2010. The Celtics open the season Tuesday against the Miami Heat. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)

Today is also the anniversary of the Celtics’ hiring Doc Rivers as their head coach in 2004.

Rivers would lead Boston to a title in 2008, and amass a 416-305 regular season record, and a 59-47 postseason record, good for .577 and .557 winning percentages respectively.

It is the birthday (1946) of former Celtic guard Rick Weitzman, who was drafted by the team out of Northeastern in the 1967 NBA Draft, and would win a ring with the team in the 1967-68 season, his sole one in the NBA.

He would average 1.3 points, 0.4 rebounds and 0.3 assists per game over the 25 games he appeared for the Celtics.

Feb 7, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Sacramento Kings point guard Isaiah Thomas (22) dribbles he ball while being defended by Boston Celtics power forward Brandon Bass (30) during the first half at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Former Boston big man Brandon Bass was also born today in 1985 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

The LSU product would be dealt to the Celtics for Glen Davis and Von Wafer in 2011 and would play four seasons with Boston, averaging 10.6 points, 5.5 boards, and 1.1 assists per game.

San Antonio Spurs forward DeMar DeRozan (10) drives to the basket against the defense of Boston Celtics forwards Jayson Tatum, left, and Aaron Nesmith during the first half of an NBA basketball game Friday, April 30, 2021, in Boston. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

Finally, it is also the date that Jayson Tatum scored 60 points in a come-from-behind win over the San Antonio Spurs that saw the St. Louis native help Boston overcome a 32-point deficit as he tied Larry Bird’s all-time scoring record with the Celtics.

“It was a special night,” Tatum said afterward via the AP. “Just being around guys, playing with guys you enjoy being around, and are happy for your success … we all see the hard work each and every one of us put in every day, so that when someone, myself or whoever it is, has a night like that, just to share that moment with them is special.”

“Just to have your teammates be happy for you means everything,” he added.

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Story originally appeared on Celtics Wire