Oct. 11, 1983

As opening night in the NBA approached, the Celtics found themselves at an impasse with Robert Parish. They had offered their center $650,000 per year and his agent dismissed it out of hand, calling it insulting.

In 1983, not everyone in the NBA made millions of dollars each season. Believe it or not, $650,000 was considered pretty good money.

And the Celtics considered themselves on a mission. They won the team’s 14th championship in 1981. Their coach that season, Bill Fitch, was T after having made enemies with most of the men on his roster.  Easy-going coach K.C. Jones had the reins.

Now Parish, through his agent, said he’d sit out the season if necessary.

Larry Bird’s reaction, as expressed to the Boston Globe:

“If Robert doesn’t want to be here, he doesn’t want to be here. We got enough talent on the bench. This is gonna hurt us, of course, but we’ll get by somehow.”
We’ll never know if Bird was right. Parish returned and the Celtics won the 1984 NBA crown.