Boston, MA 02114
Boston Garden was an arena in Boston, Massachusetts. Designed by boxing promoter Tex Rickard, who also built the third iteration of New York's Madison Square Garden, it opened on November 17, 1928, as "Boston Madison Square Garden" (later shortened to just "Boston Garden") and outlived its original namesake by 30 years. It was above North Station, a train station which was originally a hub for the Boston and Maine Railroad and is now a hub for MBTA Commuter Rail and Amtrak trains.
The Garden hosted home games for the Boston Bruins of the National Hockey League (NHL) and the Boston Celtics of the National Basketball Association (NBA), as well as rock concerts, amateur sports, boxing and professional wrestling matches, circuses, and ice shows. It was also used as an exposition hall for political rallies such as the speech by John F. Kennedy in November 1960. Boston Garden was demolished in 1998, three years after the completion of its successor arena, TD Garden
Rickard built the arena specifically with boxing in mind, believing every seat should be close enough to see the "sweat on the boxers' brows". Because of this design theme, fans were much closer to the players during Bruins and Celtics games than in most arenas, leading to a distinct hometown advantage. This physical proximity also created spectacular acoustic effects, much like the Chicago Stadium. When teams made playoff appearances, and a sold-out crowd was chanting or screaming, the impact was enormous.
Due to the success of the Celtics in the 1980s, the Boston Garden was one of the most difficult buildings for visiting NBA teams. During the 1985–86 season, the Celtics were 40–1 at home, setting the NBA record for home court mastery (before the San Antonio Spurs tied the record 30 years later in the 2015–16 season). They also finished the post-season undefeated at home. Combined with the following regular season, the Celtics' Garden record was an amazing 79-3 between the 1985–86 and 1986–87 regular seasons.
While the parquet floor was an important part of the history of the Celtics, it was not originally part of the Garden. The parquet floor was built and installed in the aforementioned Boston Arena (first home of the Bruins hockey team) and moved to the Garden in 1952. It is said the Celtics knew which way the basketball would bounce off any section of the floor; this was one contributing factor to the Celtics' many NBA championships. The floor became as much a part of Boston sports lore as the Green Monster of Fenway Park. The parquet floor was used at the FleetCenter until December 22, 1999. Portions of the original floor are integrated with new parquet.