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Derrick White wins prestigious 2024 Red Auerbach Award. Here's why.

BOSTON -- Derrick White has essentially become the perfect Celtic since arriving in Boston two years ago, a player who is only interested in helping the team win over his own personal accolades. On Thursday night, White received one of the most prestigious awards that the franchise hands out.

White was announced as the 2024 recipient of the Red Auerbach Award ahead of Thursday's loss to the New York Knicks at TD Garden. The honor is given annually to the player or coach "who best exemplifies the spirit of what it means to be a Celtic through exceptional performance on and off the court." The award is named for the legendary Celtics coach and architect Arnold "Red" Auerbach, who won nine titles as Celtics head coach and seven others as an executive.  

Celtics owner and governor Wyc Grousbeck and co-owner Robert Epstein presented the award to White ahead of tip-off on Thursday.

"Derrick has been an integral part of this team both on and off the court," said Grousbeck. "He embodies what it means to be a Boston Celtic and has consistently shown up not only for his teammates, but for members of the community as a role model, mentor, and friend."

New York Knicks v Boston Celtics
Derrick White of the Boston Celtics poses for a photograph with managing partners Wyc Grousbeck and Robert Epstein after being awarded the Red Auerbach trophy. Brian Fluharty / Getty Images

White has done a whole lot of everything on an absolutely loaded Boston squad this season, averaging a career-high 15.3 points per game off 46.3 percent shooting from the floor. He's got a nose for making big plays in big moments, whether it's knocking down a key shot, pulling down an important rebound, or flying in for a game-winning/series-saving putback at the buzzer. White has formed the best defensive backcourt in the NBA alongside Jrue Holiday this season, and leads all NBA guards with 1.2 blocks per game.

White made a strong push for an All-Star spot with his stellar first half of the season, and will be in the running to claim a second straight All-Defensive nod at the end of the season. Of course, he figures to play a major role as the top-seeded Celtics play for a title this postseason.

Previous winners of The Red Auerbach Award

The Red Auerbach award was created in 2006 following his death at the age of 89. Paul Pierce was the first recipient of the award, which he won twice during his Celtics career.

Paul Pierce (2006, 2013)
Al Jefferson (2007)
Kevin Garnett (2008, 2012)
Ray Allen (2009)
Rajon Rondo (2010)
Doc Rivers (2011)
Brandon Bass (2014)
Avery Bradley (2015)
Isaiah Thomas (2016)
Al Horford (2017)
Kyrie Irving (2018)
Marcus Smart (2019)
Kemba Walker (2020)
Jayson Tatum (2021)
Robert Williams III (2022)
Jaylen Brown (2023)

Brown made sure to give White some love and recognition on Thursday night.

"It means a lot to Derrick to be recognized for who he is as a player, but who he is as a person as well," said Brown. "The Red Auerbach kind of represents that, so shout-out to Derrick."

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