Game 5 NBA Finals Warriors vs Celtics Preview
After a 2-2 deadlock in the series, the NBA Finals return to Chase Center on Monday for Game 5. Both the Warriors and the Celtics have not lost back-to-back games this postseason. Even though the series has been decided by double digits in each game — the Warriors’ 10-point victory in Game 4 was the closest so far . With that being said, the series has been much closer than that, as demonstrated by the 2-2 tie right now. As a matter of fact, the Warriors have outscored the Celtics by only one point (422-421) through the first four games of this year’s NBA“` Finals.
Thanks to their Game Four victory Friday, the Warriors have reclaimed home-court advantage in the NBA Finals. The Warriors can and most definitely will take advantage of whatever they can get with three games left in the series and each club two wins away from an NBA Championship, as the Dubs have gone 10-1 at home these playoffs. The series will be determined in the second half if Monday’s Game 5 follows the pattern of the first four. The team that has won the second half of the first four games has won each game of the series. Each of the Warriors’ first four games ended with a third-quarter win, and they have a plus minus of 49 in those quarters, while the Celtics won Games 1 and 3 with overpowering fourth-quarter performances.
This is shaping up to be the biggest game in the history of the Chase Center so far.
Despite a close game, the Warriors were able to pull away late with a 17-3 run to win Game 4 by 10 in TD Garden. Wiggins had a career-high 16 rebounds to go along with 17 points.
Stephen Curry has been unstoppable so far in this series. Since the start of the Finals, he has averaged 34.3 points per game while shooting more than 50% from the field and more than 50% from three-point range. If he continues to play at this level, this will be Curry’s best NBA Finals performance and the third best playoff series of his entire career. With a sore left foot, Curry was able to log a team postseason-high of 41 minutes in Game 4 and had one of the biggest games of his career, which should ease any fears about his ankle.
However, Andrew Wiggins and Kevon Looney have been steady contributors in this series as well, albeit quieter. Jayson Tatum’s All-NBA offense is a dauntingtask for Wiggins. Just as he did in the Western Conference Finals against Luka Doncic, Wiggins is making Tatum earn every bucket he has made this round. Tatum is averaging 22.3 points per game these finals and is shooting a mediocre 34.1 percent from the field, 17 percent less than what he averaged in his first three series of these NBA playoffs. Offensively, Wiggins has carried the Warriors a couple times, particularly early in games. He has been eating the glass this postseason, easily rebounding the basketball better than he ever has in his career, and he had eight straight Warriors points in the first quarter of Friday’s victory.
Wiggins and Looney are each averaging 8.5 rebounds per game in this series, which is tied for the most on the team. Looney has been a constant presence for the Dubs, whether he’s starting or coming off the bench. When it comes to the NBA Finals, no one has a better plus-minus rating than Looney’s (+9.0 per game) because of his consistent postseason play, which has included everything from finishing at the rim to setting screens to rim protection.
When things go wrong for Boston, they always find a way to get back up and play better the next time around. As of this postseason, Boston has gone 7-0 while coming off a loss, and 8-3 away from home. Jaylen Brown and Jaylen Tatum lead the way for the Celtics, each averaging 22.3 points in this series. Additionally, Boston forwards Marcus Smart, Derrick White, and Al Horford have all had their moments during these year’s Finals. Robert Williams III has made an impact on the defensive side of the ball, sending shots away pretty often. When it comes to blocking shots, he’s second to only Kevon Looney among players who play at least 15 minutes each game in this series, with an average plus-minus of (+5.0). The C’s will need to continue to be top road team in postseason to have a chance of winning the championship and that’s exactly what they have done so far.
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