Xavier Tillman closing in on adding to Michigan State NBA championship legacy

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Michigan State basketball and the NBA have had a long history, and plenty of successful Spartans play or have played in the league.

That success hasn't just been in individual accolades. More often than not a Spartan has been a part of a NBA World Championship. That legacy is long, with seven former Spartans holding the distinction of winning an NBA title.

In some cases their are a few with more than one.

Magic Johnson tops that list winning five with the Los Angeles Lakers, then comes Draymond Green winning four with the Golden State Warriors. Shannon Brown grabbed two titles with the Lakers. As for the other four players with championship rings, all have one with Kevin Willis and Steve Smith earning theirs with the San Antonio Spurs. As for Bryn Forbes, he won a championship with the Milwaukee Bucks.

That brings us to the team with a chance to win the 2024 NBA Championship the Boston Celtics, who have a Spartan looking to win his first Championship. That Spartan is Xavier Tillman, who can join Sam Vincent as the only other Spartan to win a title with the Celtics.

You have to go back to the 1980s to remember the last time a Spartan was a part of a Celtics Championship.

Tillman was able to get into game three of the finals in Dallas, and make a big impact including hitting a wide-open three-pointer, that all but sealed the deal for Boston to take a 3-0 lead in the series.

His shot got his teammates off the bench in celebration.

He also made a huge defensive play against the Mavs' Luka Doncic, and the Celtics will need Tillman once again in Game 4, if they want to pull the sweep and win the NBA crown.

The Spartan NBA legacy is deep, and I will be happy to see Tillman add his name to the list of NBA champions who played for Michigan State.