Boston Celtics NBA Finals rookies stun veteran Golden State Warriors to deny Stephen Curry brilliance | NBA News
A Boston Celtics team made up entirely of NBA Finals rookies staged a heroic comeback to stun Stephen Curry and the veteran Golden State Warriors.
Jaylen Brown powered the late charge and scored 24 points, Al Horford hit six 3-pointers as part of a 26-point display, and the Celtics rode the most lopsided fourth quarter in league history. NBA Finals to record a 120-108 win over the Warriors. in Game 1 on Thursday night.
Their 40-16 final frame canceled out an outrageous first quarter by Curry where he scored 21 points on 7-for-9 shooting, including 6 of 8 in three, to set a new record of 3 points scored in a single quarter. -time in the NBA. Finals.
Boston struggled to keep up with the Warriors’ snappy ball movement and shooters in every spot on the floor early on, but the Celtics made a key defensive change by moving Marcus Smart to the screen and roll Draymond Green-Curry and the defensive player. of the year ruled it out in the second quarter.
Curry scored 34 points as he returned to the big NBA stage for the first time in three years, but the Warriors couldn’t sustain their momentum after a 38-point third quarter that put them ahead 92-80 and collapsed in the Fourth.
“It’s not ideal, but I believe in who we are and how we handle adversity, how we reacted all year, how we react in the playoffs after a loss,” Curry said. “So learn a lot from that fourth quarter, obviously they got a lot of shots. It looked like they only missed deep in the fourth. When you have a team that just finds a bit of momentum like it did it and she keep shooting, it’s hard to get that momentum back.”
As mediocre as the Warriors were in later stages, the Celtics were brilliant, becoming the first team to trail a Finals game by 10 or more points after three quarters and win by 10 or more. They are now 8-2 on the road in these playoffs.
Horford, who celebrates his 36th birthday on Friday, is truly the veteran in the locker room in his 15th year in the league and more than five years older than any of his teammates. The Dominican had played 141 postseason games, the most ever to play in the NBA Finals, before making his debut on the biggest stage on Thursday night.
When his chance came, it’s safe to say he delivered.
“I felt like the guys kept finding me every time. Derrick White also landed some tough shots there,” Horford said. “I was just getting the looks, spilling them. That’s it.”
Boston made its first seven long-range tries in the fourth and went 9 of 12 from beyond the arc in the period as nearly everyone got involved in the 3-point flurry, with White finishing the game with 21 points and 5-of-8 from beyond the arc.
Jayson Tatum was the only Celtics regular to struggle offensively, finishing 3 for 17, despite having 13 assists.
“It’s an incredible feeling to be here and compete at this level against such a dynamic franchise for the past two years,” Boston guard Payton Pritchard said. “I think we’re all looking forward to the challenge of going through the show and trying to do that.”
White’s 3-pointer over Curry with 5:40 remaining tied the game at 103, then Horford struck deep the next time as the Celtics took their first lead since halftime.
Brown, who played in neighboring California for one college season, made back-to-back baskets that tied the game at 47 with 5:03 left before halftime and the Celtics led 56-54 at the break. Golden State then used a signature push in the third quarter, scoring 38 points to build a big lead.
Brown scored five quick runs to start in the fourth and assisted on an alley-oop dunk to Robert Williams III as the Celtics fell back 92-87 with 9:35 remaining. The lead was four midway through the last frame before Boston passed Golden State with a 20-2 run that made the score 117-103.
Warriors coach Steve Kerr believes the volatility of the 3-point shot, and whether you make it or miss it, is the key factor behind the huge swings in momentum in the game as the pendulum swung back and forth. team to another between the third quarter and the fourth.
“They do [nine] three in the fourth quarter. So I think it has everything to do with 3-point shooting,” Kerr said. You didn’t see those kind of swings even a decade ago because you didn’t have teams that could do threes from every position and teams that could string together a number of threes like most teams can do it these days.”
For the hosts, Andrew Wiggins scored 20 points on his Finals debut and Draymond Green grabbed 11 rebounds before committing a foul with 48.3 seconds left. Klay Thompson contributed 15 points as the Warriors entered their sixth Finals in eight years after making five consecutive trips from 2015-2019 and winning three championships.
Game 2 is Sunday night at the Chase Center, which you can watch live on Sky Sports Arena & Main Event from 00:45 and they will now be under intense pressure to win it, having dropped the opener if the likes of Green, Thompson and Curry are to have a good chance of winning a fourth championship ring this year.
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