Celtics Owner Had Great Quote About How Winning is More Important Than Making Money

Wyc Grousbeck has his priorities in order from the outset.
Feb 15, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA;  Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown (7), head coach Joe Mazzulla, governor Wyc Grousbeck and forward Jayson Tatum (0).
Feb 15, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown (7), head coach Joe Mazzulla, governor Wyc Grousbeck and forward Jayson Tatum (0). / Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
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The Boston Celtics are two wins away from hanging the 18th championship banner in the history of the franchise. Pulling off the feat will immortalize all who contributed— including team governor and head of ownership Wyc Grousbeck, who has known that Celtics fans only care about championships from the very beginning.

Grousbeck was the subject of a Boston Globe article on Tuesday after he got into a back-and-forth with Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Dončić during Game 2 on Sunday night. The article, written by columnist Shirley Leung, revealed an all-time quote from Grousbeck that reflects his priorities and should be music to the ears of any Celtics fans.

Grousbeck bought the team in 2002 by rounding up a large group of investors. In his pitch to his potential partners, however, Grousbeck wanted to make it abundantly clear that as long as he was in charge, winning titles was the priority. Not making a profit—to the extent that Grousbeck declared his ownership group should be prepared to get paid in a different sort of currency.

"I don’t want your lunch money or your college fund," Grousbeck said, per Leung. "You’re all very well-to-do people. I want a small percentage of your net worth. You put it into the Celtics and alongside me, I will run it. But I will treat you all like partners. But this is not about a percentage return or anything like that. This is about winning championships... so we will be paid in enjoyment.

"We will be paid in parades.”

What a great line. And one he has already proven true; it was under Grousbeck's watch that the Celtics acquired forward Kevin Garnett and guard Ray Allen to pair with forward Paul Pierce, winning the 2008 NBA championship one year later.

Grousbeck has managed to live up to that mantra in the decades he's served as governor of the team. It will also be tested in the very near future. The new CBA means the Celtics will be paying more money than ever before if they want to keep this core together. They are already slated to set a record in luxury tax penalties next season and the price is only going to increase with potential extensions for forward Jayson Tatum and guard Derrick White coming down the pipeline this summer.

But those are decisions for tomorrow. Today, Grousbeck's tendency to back up those bold words with big checks has Boston on the precipice of NBA history.

Liam McKeone


Liam McKeone is a Senior Writer for the Breaking & Trending News Team at Sports Illustrated. In addition to his role as a writer, he collaborates with other teams across Minute Media to help define his team’s content strategy. He has been in the industry as a content creator since 2017, and prior to joining SI in 2024, Liam worked for NBC Sports Boston and The Big Lead. In addition to his work as a writer, he has hosted the Press Pass Podcast covering sports media and The Big Stream covering pop culture. A graduate of Fordham University, Liam is always up for a good debate and enjoys loudly arguing about sports, rap music, books, and video games. Liam has been a member of the National Sports Media Association (NSMA) since 2020.