Feb. 3, 1959

Walter Brown, president of the Boston Celtics, was also one of the founding fathers of the National Basketball Association. And it seems he cared as much about the league as he did his franchise.

The Celtics won their first championship in 1957, defeating the St. Louis Hawks in the NBA Finals. In 1958, St. Louis turned the tables and topped Boston for the crown.

And in 1959, there was an air of certainty that the two would meet again for the title.

The Celtics went on to win the Eastern Division with a record of 52-20, 12 games ahead of the New York Knicks, The Hawks won the Western Division with a record of 49-23, 16 games ahead of the Minneapolis Lakers.

There was general grousing that the league was so top-heavy that the rest of the league was hopeless from the season’s opening-tip to the final horn.

In response, Brown made an offer that would seem mutinous among modern title contenders.

Brown said he would give up his first-round pick in the draft if it would help bring parity to the league.

As for expansion to the West Coast, “We shouldn’t expand westward until we strengthen the teams we have now.”

The also-rans, Brown said, “are strung out like a bunch of freight cars.”

There is no word of Red Auerbach’s reaction to his boss’ observation.