Carlisle remembers that each day in practice, the starting five -- Bird, Parish, McHale, DJ, and Ainge -- would scrimmage the back-ups, which included Walton, Carlisle, 22-year-old Sam Vincent,veteran guard Scotty Wedman, 6-foot guard Jerry Sichting, journeyman forward David Thirdkill, and center Greg Kite.
But it wasn't the typical end-of-practice-scrimmage. They kept careful track of which team won, posting the daily results and updated W-L record in the locker room for all to see.
Carlisle credits Walton for helping to bring out the best in all of the guys, starters and reserves alike:
“His presence allowed other role players like myself...to play at a higher level. All of a sudden our practices became very competitive.”