Atlanta Hawks — Trading Away Bill Russell
Bill Russell going to Boston seemed to be pre-ordained, even when he was drafted by the then-St. Louis Hawks. After missing out on Russell in the 1956 NBA Draft, Red Auerbach traded Ed Macauley — whom St. Louis coveted — to the Hawks.
Coincidentally, they also drafted both Tommy Heinsohn and K.C. Jones in that same draft, thus netting three Hall of Fame players in the same night. But after winning 11 NBA championships with the Celtics, the Russell trade is considered to be one of the most important — and one-sided — trades in North American sports.