adidas Set To Launch Commemorative Arnold "Red" Auerbach Collection
BOSTON (March 11, 2007) - adidas and the Boston Celtics announced today the launch of the limited-edition commemorative Arnold "Red" Auerbach Collection honoring the late Celtics patriarch for his contributions to social change and to the game of basketball. adidas will produce only 938 jerseys and pairs of shoes, one for every Auerbach win, for this special program recognizing one of the winningest coaches in NBA history.
The shoe contains depictions of various Red Auerbach iconographies, including the Celtics logo, 938 wins, 16 championships, his retired #2 jersey and famous celebratory cigar. The sock liner has a parquet floor pattern to emulate the famous playing surface of the Boston Garden. It also includes famous quotes by Auerbach sublimated in kelly green.
Each pair of shoes is numbered through 938 starting with 00, the number Celtics Legend Robert Parish wore. Parish along with other Celtics Legends will receive their own commemorative jerseys and shoes to honor the special relationships Coach Auerbach had with his players.
"The Celtics could not be more proud to partner with adidas in honoring the great Red Auerbach," Celtics Chief Operating Officer Rich Gotham said. "adidas has not only recognized Red for all his accomplishments as a coach and in the front office, but also as an ambassador of the game and for his efforts in integrating African-Americans into the NBA."
The shoe also recognizes Auerbach as a leader of social change. It includes embroidery of C50C, representing Auerbach's drafting of the first African-American player in NBA history, Chuck Cooper, in 1950, B66R for Bill Russell becoming the NBA's first African-American head coach in 1966, and 63-FIVE-64 representing the first all African-American starting five in league history during the 1963-64 season.
"We have a love and passion for the game of basketball - and no one has had a greater impact on the game than Red Auerbach," said Lawrence Norman, VP Director of Global Basketball, adidas.
"It was not only about wins and losses with Red, it was about bold decisions that changed the game and all sports forever. All of us that worked on these products are Bostonians, so it was truly an honor to work together with our hometown team, the Boston Celtics, and to help support Red Auerbach's foundation."
adidas, the Celtics and the National Basketball Association will allocate proceeds from the commemorative jerseys and shoes to the Red Auerbach Youth Foundation. The three organizations will make a joint donation of $45,000 to the fund during a special halftime ceremony at the Celtics game on Wednesday, March 14. Celtics Legends JoJo White, Tommy Heinsohn, Tom "Satch" Sanders and Cedric Maxwell will present the check to Red's foundation. The RAYF helps enrich the lives of children throughout Massachusetts by providing sports and recreational programs.
The Red Auerbach merchandise will be available to Celtics fans at the TD Banknorth Garden Pro Shop, on Celtics.com, the NBA Store, NBAStore.com, shopadidas.com and select retail outlets.