Johnny Whittey was never a star player, yet over a fourteen year period he was integral part of one of the most important teams in the history of basketball. Whitty joined Frank McCormick’s New York Celtics in 1914. He was a tenacious, hardscrabble player of limited skills, but valued for his toughness and constant hustle. McCormick’s Celtics were successful, but not distinguishable from a dozen other pre-war New York teams. When McCormick went into the service during World War I, he lost control of the team to promoter Jim Furey and his brother Tom. In the years immediately after the war, the Celtics continued to grow in stature. By the 1919-20 season they, were considered to be the best team in New York City. The Celtics won 65 of 69 games and played to crowds of over 4,000 fans (a huge number at the time). By the early 1920’s, Furey had signed Dutch Dehnert and Johnny Beckman and the Celtics had begun to barnstorm extensively into the Midwest and South. Furey did not travel with the team, so he appointed Whitty (who had become his brother-in- law) to manage and coach the team on the road. Whitty no longer played except in emergencies. In 1925-26, Whitty took leave of the Celtics, and signed at mid-season to coach the struggling Fort Wayne team in the American Basketball League. The following season, he was back with the Celtics when they joined the ABL and was at their helm for two consecutive championship seasons.


JOHNNY WHITTY Height: 5:09 Weight: 175 College: None
John Joseph Whitty Born: Feb 2, 1896 Died:  Dec 26, 1965 Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Year Team League     GA FGM  FTM   FTA  PCT.  AST  PTS   AVG
1914-15 Original Celtics Indep
1915-16 Original Celtics Indep
1916-17 Original Celtics Indep
1917-18 Original Celtics Indep
1918-19 Original Celtics Indep
1919-20 Original Celtics Indep
1920-21 Original Celtics Indep
1920-21 Pittsfield NYSL 23 23 23 69 3.0
1921-22 New York Celtics EBL 1 0 0 0 .000 0 0 0.0
1921-22 Original Celtics Indep
1922-23 Atlantic City EBL 1 2 0 1 .000 0 4 4.0
1922-23 Original Celtics Indep
1923-24 Original Celtics Indep
1924-25 Original Celtics Indep
1925-26 Fort Wayne ABL 8 4 2 10 1.3
1926-27 Brooklyn ABL Voluntarily Retired – Coach
1927-28 New York ABL 7 0 0 0 0.0
Major League Totals 40 29 25 83 2.1
Year Team League     GA FGM  FTM   FTA  PCT.  AST  PTS   AVG
1927-28 New York ABL 1 0 0 0 0.0
Major League Totals 1 0 0 0 0.0
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