BOSTON, JUNE 12 -- Chris Ford wants to bring back some of the fire that has been missing from the Boston Celtics the past few seasons.
"I think we aren't the team that we were when you talk about the pride and passion," Ford said today after being named to succeed Jimmy Rodgers as the Boston coach.
"If you go back and look at those championship tapes, and the pride and the passion that they talk about in those tapes, I think that it could be we were missing it. But those are the types of things that I want to see instilled."
The 41-year-old Ford, who becomes the 11th coach in the Celtics' distinguished history, said the team needs quickness at almost every position to improve the transition from offense to defense.
Boston went 52-30 before losing to the New York Knicks in the first round of the NBA playoffs after winning the first two games of a best-of-five series. Two days later the Celtics fired Rodgers.
Ford, an assistant under Rodgers, said he will look at every facet of the team, an aging unit led by a front line he played with on the Celtics' 1981 championship team -- Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish, all in their thirties.
"During this summer we are going to be dissecting this team and then putting it back together, as far as analyzing it, inspecting it, and seeing what parts have to be improved," he said.
Dave Gavitt, who considered Ford and Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski for the job after being named chief operating officer on May 30, predicted Ford would have no trouble dealing with a team that includes five players he played with or against -- Bird, McHale, Parish, Dennis Johnson and Jim Paxson.
Ford, who played 10 seasons with Detroit and Boston, is credited with making the NBA's first three-point shot in 1979.
He retired in 1982, became a Celtics assistant in the 1983-84 season, and is one of four players who also coached on NBA championship teams in Boston. Bill Russell, Tommy Heinsohn and K.C. Jones are the others.