Let’s start once again. From Chase Center, to San Francisco, where Golden State and Boston are back on par, just like when they left over a week ago. The Finals restart from 2-2, under the banner of Steph Curry, balance and uncertainty. They are also the keys to race-5: here are the 3 things that will decide it.
The Celtics in these playoffs have always managed to react to a defeat with a convincing victory in the next game. “It is primarily a mental issue – says Jayson Tatum in the belly of Chase Center -. It is a question of attention to detail, of adapting to what happens on the pitch on the fly and being aware of not letting things precipitate ”. “Concentration, this must be our watchword” relaunches Jaylen Brown. Coach Udoka needs first of all his two stars, but remember that for his Celtics it will be above all a question of attack: the two victories came scoring 120 and 116 points, the two defeats not exceeding 100. The attack depends mainly by Tatum and Brown, curiously with 22.3 points on average each: the reaction of the Celtics starts with the two of them.
Steph Curry continues to be the cover man of this series, especially after the 43 points with which he decided game-4 in Boston. He travels at 34.3 points on average with 50% from the field and 49% from three. Stopping it, or at least trying to limit it, is at the top of the Celtics’ to-do list. Or not? “In reality we are not focused on him as we have been, for example, on Kevin Durant – explains coach Udoka -. We trust our individual defense and it must be said that he has made some shots that only he can do. However, I believe that, if we manage to improve in attack, we must continue to defend against him as we have done so far: allow him to take some shots, make things as difficult for him as possible but try to limit everyone else. ” That’s what they’re doing, as the Warriors have never managed to break 108 points in this series. Despite Steph’s wonders.
In a balanced series like this one, in which after 4 games two well-trained teams like Warriors and Celtics know each other’s flaws by heart, it’s the little things that make the difference. And the X-Factors, the players who perform well beyond their level. The first was Al Horford, with his 26 points including 11 in the fourth period. In race-4 it was Andrew Wiggins, who in addition to defending Tatum put in 17 points and 16 rebounds. Both teams are looking for their X-Factor, the wild card that by playing the game of life can help the stars make a difference. For Golden State, in addition to Wiggins, the other suspects are Draymond Green and Jordan Poole. Green because, despite being the leader of the defense, in attack he is so null that he has more fouls (18) than points (17) so far. Polle because he travels at 12.5 points per game without ever exceeding 20, giving himself one of those exploits that at the start of the playoff allowed him to replace Steph Curry without problems. For Boston as well as Horford, who after 26 points in race-1 scored 21 in the next 3 games, the man of the turning point could be Grant Williams, the hero of game-7 of the semifinal against Milwaukee who is struggling in the Finals with just 4.8 points and 3 total triples on target. The team that finds its X-Factor will return to Boston ahead 3-2. To a title win …
June 13, 2022 (change June 13, 2022 | 4:30 pm)
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