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Celtics vs Warriors Live bets, spreads, lines, prop bets, picks and odds updates: Latest news on NBA Finals Game 1
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Neither has faced near the challenge in these playoffs that the opposing unit presents. Which one of them can sustain success despite a three-level jump? We'll find out in Game 1.
The Athletic has you covered with everything you need to know for Game 5.
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Golden State has waited a week since knocking off Dallas, and Boston is just a few days removed from winning Game 7 in Miami. Will the extra rest help the Warriors be fresher, or will it cause some early rustiness?
BetMGM has Golden State favored by 3.5 points over the Celtics in Game 1, and all of our experts picked the Warriors to win the NBA Finals’ opening game Thursday night at the Chase Center.
The 2022 NBA Finals between the Warriors and Boston Celtics is expected to be a tight series.
Both teams feature tenacious defenses that finished Nos. 1 and 2 in defensive rating during the regular season. Both teams also boast multiple offensive playmakers that can get hot in the blink of an eye -- the Warriors with Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Jordan Poole and the Celtics with their electric tandem of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.
Although many experts are predicting Golden State to clinch its fourth championship in the last eight years, the analytics seem to favor Boston.
On his podcast that dropped Wednesday, one day ahead of Game 1, Draymond Green named the one thing each team needs to do in order to win the title.
"The Warriors will win the NBA Finals this year if we control our turnovers," Green said. "This is a very good [Celtics] defense. We have to be crisp with our passing, understand that they have great length, they play passing lanes, they’re very aggressive, they’re a switching defense. So, it’s very important."
If the series goes the other way, what will it look like?
"The Celtics will win the Finals if their defense is able to, one, stop Steph Curry," Green said. "I think that’s where everything starts at. If they ultimately are able to disrupt our offense -- now, what does disrupt mean? Ultimately, taking you out of the things that you want to do. So, if they’re able to disrupt our offense, then the Celtics win the NBA Finals."
The two teams split their regular-season meetings one apiece. In the Warriors' 111-107 win over Boston on Dec. 17, Curry dropped 30 points on 8-of-14 shooting. In Golden State's 110-88 loss to the Celtics on March 16, Curry committed four turnovers in 14 minutes before exiting in the second quarter due to a foot injury.
Still, I think most observers would agree that, in Warriors-Celtics, we are left with the two best teams in the field. Neither of these squads are here by luck or by fluke. This series also promises to be a great matchup, pitting the Warriors’ virtuosic offensive brilliance against Boston’s rangy, suffocating defense. (No one should sleep on the fact that Golden State is a terrific defensive team as well, and Boston boasts a couple of the league’s more explosive offensive talents in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.) Vegas has the Warriors as favorites, which makes sense given their star power, experience, home-court advantage, and the ease with which they’ve dispatched their competition thus far. The Celtics are also more banged up, with key players Marcus Smart and Robert Williams both dealing with ongoing injury issues.
NBA Finals 2022: Experts' predictions for Golden State Warriors vs. Boston Celtics
The 2022 Finals features the league's top two defenses throughout the regular season, but the Golden State Warriors-Boston Celtics clash will focus on some of the most dangerous offensive threats in the game.
Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, their Splash Brothers partnership whole again after Thompson missed more than two seasons with ACL and Achilles' injuries, are making nearly eight 3-pointers per game during Golden State's run to the Finals, while Boston's dynamic duo of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown each have a 40-plus point performance on their 2022 postseason résumé.
This series also presents a host of lineup decisions for coaches Steve Kerr and Ime Udoka. Will the Warriors go heavy on smallball, with Draymond Green at center? Who will be the primary defenders on superstars like Curry and Tatum?
Which side will prevail? Our experts are making their predictions for the Finals winner and which player will be named Finals MVP.
This NBA Finals Might Make the Crappy Playoffs That Led Here Worth It
We’re finally there, or at least almost there. After a month and a half of NBA Playoffs only two teams are left, the Boston Celtics and the Golden State Warriors, with the Finals beginning Thursday night. The Warriors have enjoyed a relatively smooth journey to this point, never facing a series that went longer than six games and recently making quick work of an overmatched Dallas Mavericks team in the Western Conference Finals. The Celtics, after an opening-round sweep against the miserable Brooklyn Nets, took about as bumpy a road as you can take, grinding out heart-attack wins in two punishing series against the Milwaukee Bucks and Miami Heat, both of which went to seven games.
These haven’t been the greatest playoffs by any stretch. The best series we saw, the aforementioned Celtics-Bucks second-round epic, had its instant-classic status slightly tarnished by the fact that the Bucks were missing their second-best player, Khris Middleton. The Suns-Mavs second-round seven-gamer out West will probably be remembered more for the top-seeded Suns’ spectacular meltdown than for anything the Mavs did. The Heat-Celtics Conference Finals was dramatic on the back end, but the first five games were mostly unwatchable. The Timberwolves-Grizzlies first-rounder was cute but not that close, and also feels like it happened several million years ago.
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