Celtics (30-9) vs. Spurs (20-21)
January 5, 1980
The HemisFair Arena
The Celtics fell to 0-2 in the HemisFair Arena with a loss to the San Antonio Spurs, falling 119-111. In front of the largest Spurs home crowd in the team’s history, the C’s squandered an 11-point fourth quarter lead, finishing 3-3 on their six game road trip. The Spurs scored 18 consecutive fourth quarter points to surge past a tired Celtics squad clearly ready to return home. Even worse, the Celtics were involved in a post-game scuffle that was resolved with Larry Bird and his gym bag.
Bob Ryan’s coverage in the January 6, 1980 edition of the Globe helped put the loss — and ensuing mayhem — in perspective:
It was like sitting in Honolulu and hearing that a tidal wave had just started gathering in Okinawa and was heading your way. You could only hope it would do its crash bit before it hit your front door. But this time it did not.
Here were the Celtics, having four times led by 15 points, and now in possessi...