The old Boston Garden was long considered a difficult place for opponents to play, often by design; Red Auerbach was famous for supposedly exploiting home-court advantage — though he often denied it — with visiting players finding cold showers and a roasting locker room, in between trying to negotiate dead spots on the parquet floor.
The Boston Garden is long gone, but visitors still have their complaints about the facilities at TD Garden, as a couple of New Englanders, including Miami Heat sharpshooter Duncan Robinson, explained on his podcast this week.
After guest Pat Connaughton, an Arlington native and St. John’s Prep grad who now plays for the Bucks, said “The Boston Celtics locker room is the worst visiting team locker room in the entire NBA,” Robinson weighed in with even harsher criticism.
“If you walked in and you said, ‘This is a high school locker room,’ I would say, ‘That’s a really [expletive] high school locker room,’” Robinson explained.
The two pros with local ties detailed everything from cold and broken showers to spaces between the floor panels on the parquet court.
“I’m talking like, the carpet that’s matted down to the point where it’s worn down in areas, the lockers are tighter than my shoulders, there’s only enough for maybe 15 guys,” Connaughton continued. “It’s like the old-school showers that’s got the rut all over the tile, and there are those old-school ice baths that are not usable, stacked up on top of each other, that prevent you from being able to use any other showers, so there are only two available ones.”
Both players have plenty of experience at TD Garden, with each taking part in lengthy playoff series against the Celtics in the spring. Boston dispatched both Milwaukee and Miami in seven games to reach the NBA Finals.
Amin Touri can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.