The Golden State Warriors welcome the East’s fifth-seeded Boston Celtics to the Chase Center Thursday night in San Francisco. Boston is one of a handful of squads rearing to battle in what will be arguably the most grueling and unpredictable Eastern Conference play-off bloodbath of all time. Who will be healthy at the right time and playing on a hot streak? Could be Boston if they keep their good vibes rolling; they’ve won 7 out of their last 10.
They have been knocking off some possible contenders, most recently defeating the Brooklyn Nets and the Memphis Grizzlies. Yes, those same Grizzlies that have already beaten the Warriors too much in recent history for any Dub Nation member’s taste.
Still not sure if people are fully appreciating how dominant Jayson Tatum was in the 4th quarter against the Grizzlies. He had 21 points. He answered everything Ja Morant did. He squashed Memphis’ hopes each time they thought they had some. It was a brilliant performance. ☘️ pic.twitter.com/bl2313vYc3— Dan Kelley (@DanKelley66) March 5, 2022
Tatum hit Memphis’ physical defense up for 37 points; he’s a special kind of player that is damn near impossible to stop if he gets into a rhythm. He’s averaging a stat stuffing 26.8 points and 8.2 rebounds per game this season. He had a 54-point game on the Nets followed by a 44-point game against the Hornets. He came somewhat back to earth in his most recent game, scoring 21 points in a close 95-92 loss to the Dallas Mavericks.
Defending this type of player is extremely difficult. It’s also exactly the task the Warriors had in mind when they traded for All-Star starter Andrew Wiggins in the 2020 season and added Otto Porter Jr. in this past offseason. Those guys are two long wings who can move their feet without fouling against rangy and physical scoring options like the 6-foot-8 Tatum.
Steve Kerr said that Andrew Wiggins didn’t practice today, but he’s feeling better and could return to the lineup tomorrow night against the Celtics.— C.J. Holmes ♂️ (@CjHolmes22) March 15, 2022
Wiggins missed Monday’s game because of general illness.
But the bigger question is who is going to guard Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Jordan Poole? This skilled and daring trio has been supercharged by the return of point-forward Draymond Green. No Warrior averages more assists than Green’s 7.3 dimes per contest, and he came back dishing them with a vengeance.
Draymond immediately gets an assist to Klay pic.twitter.com/YTJMLzZBck— Alex (@dbs408) March 15, 2022
If Wiggins can join in and sprinkle in his efficient firepower, this could be a blowout in Golden State’s favor. That it is IF what we saw Monday night is at all replicable...and GSOM buddy Joe Viray is giving me a sneaking suspicion that it is.
The Steph Curry-Klay Thompson-Jordan Poole trio, in 104 minutes played, is outscoring opponents by 40 points per 100 possessions.— Joe Viray (@JoeVirayNBA) March 13, 2022
Thompson, in particular, is benefitting from being an off-ball spot-up/catch-and-shoot operator.
ICYMI: https://t.co/LBSC5Me4Ad pic.twitter.com/gNTorzUryQ
Hmmm that looks pretty good. Draft Kings has ‘em at -165 on the moneyline; don’t forget that the Dubs have already beat the Celtics in Boston this season. GSW is fighting for the second best record in the NBA and would love to get a W over the C’s in front of Dub Nation.
Golden State Warriors vs Boston Celtics
March 16th, 2022 | 7:00 PT
Watch: NBC Sports Bay Area, ESPN | Listen: 95.7 The Game
Who ya got, Boston or Golden State?
This poll is closed
Celtics get the win and stun the Dubs
Warriors run Boston out of the gym
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