The match is set. The 2022 NBA Finals will feature two major league franchises.
The Celtics team, currently associated with the Lakers with 17 titles, will be looking to add the #18 sign to the TD Garden rafters. Warriors will try to add Title 7 to their standard books.
This will be a star-studded case that showcases the Celtics’ elite defense against the Warriors’ offensive on an equal footing. Which team will lift the Larry O’Brien Cup?
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How will Stephen Curry perform against Defensive Player of the Year for 2021-22?
Marcus Smart made headlines when these teams met in March, hurting Carey in what Steve Kerr later deemed a “dangerous play”. Prior to that injury, Curry missed three of his four field goal attempts and made four turnovers.
Curry had his blasts against previous versions of the Celtics, though. Last year, it dropped 47 and 38 points in two close losses.
The Celtics’ defense this year is different. They were one of the best defenses in recent memory in the second half of the season and in the NBA games. Curry will face more switches, better staff overall and more dynamic edge protection than he’s had so far.
Smart will probably be the main player in Curry, but the Celtics don’t have any weak defenders to target in their starting lineup. Carrie has to work for everything.
points in the paint. The Warriors were able to overcome the Mavericks’ lack of edge protection, averaging 50 points per game in paint throughout the Western Conference Finals. As a frame of reference, the Heat, Celtics and Mavs teams averaged between 32 and 40 in the conference finals.
Warriors get a lot of attention for their three-point shooting prowess, but edge pressure can create an open look for their shooters. The Mavs weren’t able to show off big bodies when the Warriors crossed their first line of defense. They also made a lot of mistakes in the connection guarding the warriors’ split cuts and heavy attack.
Could the Celtics, a heavyweight and prone to slipping into the basket, make fewer mistakes in this player’s movement than the Mavs did? They have more defensive talent, but it is the mental mistakes that they must avoid.
The tenth factor
Jordan Paul. His crime was from another world. It was also his defense of another world – but in a bad way.
Can warriors hide it? They tried to make him appear on the ball screens in their series against the Mavericks, and he was unable to properly implement that coverage.
Will they stick to this plan? Or will they cook up something new to stop him from turning mercilessly into Jason Tatum and attacking?
Robert Williams. How well can a surgically repaired knee hold up?
The Celtics looked like a different team when on the ground. Frame protection and defensive bounce are game-changing. This bounce is important because of how amazingly effective the Warriors – and Andrew Wiggins in particular – are at smashing attacking glass.
Williams has covered massive areas to clean up all of the team’s defensive issues. It was even ported to 3-point shooters in corners for large blocks on the perimeter.
If he wasn’t limited by any kind of specific minutes, he would take this Celtics’ defense to the next level.
Warriors vs Celtics series schedule
This is the complete schedule for the 2022 NBA Finals.
|Date||Game||time (Eastern time)||TV channel|
|June 2||1 . game||21:00||ABC|
|June 5||2 . game||8 pm||ABC|
|June 8||3 . game||21:00||ABC|
|June 10||4 . game||21:00||ABC|
|June 13||5* game||21:00||ABC|
|June 16||6* game||21:00||ABC|
|June 19||7* game||8 pm||ABC|
Warriors Series vs Celtics Otuck
(This section will be updated as possibilities become available.)
Choice Warriors vs Celtics, Predictions
These are going to be a great NBA Finals. If the Warriors could find a way to confuse the Celtics’ dominant defense with a series of their moves, they would win. If the Celtics can figure out a way to score enough goals, they will win.
Few games in this series will be decided which team can hit more three-points above the first half. Only the Mavericks took more from these two teams during the NBA playoffs, and their fortunes dwindled and dwindled based on how attractive they were in a given game.
When you have two evenly matched teams, it’s often because of difficult shots from deep. The Warriors were the league’s best team at those shots during the regular season, and the Celtics were 20th. The Warriors have a clear advantage there.
In the end, though, I can’t see anyone breaking the Celtics’ defense. They will drop some hot shooting games, but this is the team that is best equipped to handle the devastating attack of warriors.
The Celtics lost to the Warriors early in the regular season when they struggled out of the gate, but they were an entirely different team in the second half of the season. They blew up the Warriors in the second meeting – with the caveat that Curry missed most of that game.
I expect a rocky fight in a series, and the Celtics know how to win that way. I pick them out at seven.