Boston leads the series 1-0
But what a cold snap! The Celtics air-conditioned the hall of San Francisco, yet boiling on each of Stephen Curry’s three-point bombs (34 points) throughout the evening, to leave victorious in this first match of the finals against the Warriors (120-108 ). Despite a significant lack of experience – 123 cumulative games played at this level of the competition for players from Golden State against 0 for those from Boston – Al Horford and his partners were able to extinguish their opponents in the most important moments of the part.
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However, they seemed beaten after suffering the wrath of Steve Kerr’s men after returning from the locker room. The Californians dominated the third quarter, their trademark in each of the titles won in 2015, 2017 and 2018. They even had a lead of up to 15 points (72-87). It wasn’t enough.
The Celtics did not panic despite the clumsiness of Jayson Tatum. The All-Star winger, hampered by the defense of Andrew Wiggins and perhaps a little paralyzed by the stakes, converted only 3 of his 17 attempts. But he was smart enough to let his teammates shine. Many of his 13 assists ended with an award-winning basket from one of his comrades. Random, Derrick White, Marcus Smart or Horford. These three players – as well as Jaylen Brown – broke the lock on the opposing defense by multiplying long shots. First to come back to the score, then to deliver the coup de grace.
Warriors’ first home loss
Brown and the Celtics took advantage of a quick pass from Curry off the bench to go 9-0 early in the fourth quarter. Boston returned to two small lengths (89-91). But even then, the presence of Steph – author of a thunderous first quarter with 21 points and clearly a tone above everyone else – the public support and the experience of the Warriors made you want to thinking they were going to handle the endgame. Well not at all.
They suffered. They suffered the maddening three-point address of the Celtics. White, Horford and then Smart each scored two baskets behind the arc in money time. With a straight 17-0 passed by the Celtics to knock out the triple champions in a matter of moments. A 40-16 in 12 minutes. Al Horford finished with 26 points and 6 three-pointers (personal best). Derrick White added 21. Boston planted 21 of 41 outside attempts.
A performance necessary to win on the floor of Golden State, where the Warriors had not yet lost since the start of the playoffs. The Massachusetts franchise has already almost accomplished its first mission by recovering the home field advantage with this victory. Curry and his teammates have no choice but to come back even stronger in Game 2 on Sunday night.
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