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Celtics Win Game 1 With Impeccable Defense

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The NBA Finals NBA FINALS 2024 began with an emphatic statement from the Boston Celtics as they took on the Dallas Mavericks in Game 1. Boston's defensive strategy was the focal point, reflecting their season-long emphasis on versatility and team defense.

Defensive Versatility

Jayson Tatum emphasized that the Celtics hide no player on defense, stressing the importance of all players being able to defend well. This approach underpins Boston's success, based on both defensive versatility and offensive power.

Boston's defensive strategy shined with their ability to effectively switch between several elite defenders, including Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Derrick White and Jrue Holiday. This allowed them to handle top scorers like Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving without resorting to double-teaming.

In Game 1, the Celtics executed their defensive game plan meticulously, pressuring Doncic on just two pick-and-rolls, a notable contrast to the more frequent pressure he typically faces from other teams.

This strategic choice led to significant difficulties for Dallas, with Doncic recording just one assist, marking an all-time low in playoffs. In addition, the Mavericks offense was stifled, producing the fewest assists in any game since player tracking began in the 2013-14 season.

The impact on the Mavericks' offense was evident as their lack of ball movement resulted in poor shooting after Doncic's passes, hitting just 1-of-6. Dallas managed just nine assists compared to 11 turnovers and did not execute any dunks after a lofted pass, a staple of their offensive game.

Impenetrable

On the perimeter, Boston's defense was particularly effective, limiting Dallas to 7-of-27 three-point shooting while the Celtics hit 16 three-pointers, gaining a significant 27-point advantage from beyond the arc.

Key Dallas players were effectively neutralized. Kyrie Irving struggled, hitting 6-of-19 shots from the field, including 0-of-5 on three-point shots, and finishing with a plus-minus of -19, his worst performance of the playoffs.

He also contributed just two assists. Boston's defensive efforts were bolstered by the return of Kristaps Porzingis from a calf strain. Porzingis provided three blocks and altered multiple shots, including a critical block on Irving that led to a counterattack.

Off the bench, Sam Hauser had a notable impact, contributing a plus-17 in 16 minutes and playing a crucial role in limiting Doncic to 4-of-12 shooting from three-point range.

The coaching staff also played a significant role in Boston's success. Head coach Joe Mazzulla emphasized a defensive mindset, execution and positioning. He praised Porzingis for his defensive contributions and his adaptability after returning from injury.

The team's overall approach focused on maintaining physicality without committing fouls and adhering to its defensive principles.

The Celtics' regular season performance underscored their dominance, with 64 wins and a historically high net rating of plus-11.7. Their philosophy that any player can excel on any given night reflects their depth and adaptability.

Set 2

Heading into the series, the Celtics are prepared to make the necessary adjustments and remain composed. Jaylen Brown stressed the importance of being ready for adjustments and the contributions of bench players like Sam Hauser and Payton Pritchard.

The team is driven by the goal of securing three more wins to capture its eighteenth title, ending a 16-season drought.

Boston's Game 1 victory was a testament to their defensive strength, versatility and ability to contain Dallas' stars without resorting to double-teaming. Key contributions from players like Porzingis and Hauser bolstered their defense, while the team adhered to strategic principles under Coach Mazzulla.

This solid foundation sets a promising tone for the rest of the series.

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Betcris is operated by TV Global Enterprises Ltd. C 44378 Msida Court, 61 First Floor, Msida Seafront Msida, MSD 9043, Malta, 18883567133, under license and regulated by the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA/B2C/300/2008). License issued on August 1, 2018 until November 3, 2026.

Betcris is not promoted to persons under the age of 18 (or under the legal age for gambling in your country of residence). Excessive remote gambling and sports betting can cause gambling addiction. Responsible Gambling.

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