The NBA finals started with a bang when the Celtics scored a sounding victory over the Warriors. After that, every losing team bounced back to remain in the contest, but the pattern has changed as the Golden State Warriors marked back-to-back victories over the Boston Celtics. The Warriors now lead the series 3-2 and are just one win away from the fourth NBA title in eight years.
In the fifth game of the NBA finals between the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics at Chase Center in San Francisco, the Warriors proved to be lethal as they defeated the Celtics by 10 points margin with a scorecard of 104 – 94. The interesting thing in every game of the finals is that the defeat margin is always 10 points or more.
Charioteers of the Golden State Warriors
Andrew Wiggins and Klay Thompson were the charioteers of the Warrior’s win.
Andrew Wiggins scored 26 points overall with 13 rebounds, 2 Assists, and two steals. In Quarter1, he scored 7 points, 9 points in Q2, and 10 points in Q4. He received support from his other teammates, especially Klay Thompson, who appeared to find his mojo back from the previous game. Thompson scored 21 points in the game with three rebounds, two assists, and two steals.
Jordan Poole’s 14 points, Gary Payton’s 15 points and Stephen Curry’s 16 points also played supporting roles in the fifth game win. Although Steph Curry looked off-colour in the game, his three rebounds, eight assists, and one steal proved pivotal.
How the game unfolds?
In the first half, the Warriors’ defence stepped up, forcing nine turnovers that resulted in 13 points for the team, and at the end of the first half, the Warriors were leading the game by 51 – 39.
In the previous two wins of the NBA 2022 finals, the Warriors managed to make a long run in Q3, which assured them of the victory, but it wasn’t the case on Monday night. In the third quarter, the Celtics went hard on the Warriors. Jaylen Brown came out firing in the Q3, hitting two free throws in succession. Jayson Tatum hit two consecutive three-pointers to trim the Warriors’ advantage to two. They started the third quarter with 10-0, and with emphatic eight straight three-pointers on the back of Al Horford’s triple, they took the lead for the first time in the game and went up by 58 – 55.
The Warriors, on the other hand, worked their way back in a systematic manner. Jordan Poole ignited the Warriors’ offence with similar heroics as in the second game of the NBA finals, throwing a buzzer-beating shot from just past half-court, giving them a 75-74 lead heading into the fourth quarter. The Celtics scored 35 points in quarter 3 in contrast to the Warrior’s 24 points.
In the fourth and final quarter, the Warriors regain control by grabbing the first 7 points. Golden State Warriors managed to contain the Celtics, letting them score only 20 points against their 29 points in Q4. Wiggins scored 10 points in the last quarter bringing the Warriors to the brink of the NBA 2022 title.
The 12-point lead in the Q1 proved vital later in the game.
The Celtics can’t get over the line
For Boston Celtics, Jayson Tatum was the lead scorer with 27 points, including ten rebounds and four assists. The supporting role was played by Marcus Smart’s 20 points and Jaylen Brown’s 18 points.
Celtics missed their first twelve 3-pointers at the beginning, which was crucial in deciding the game. They were poor in steals as they managed only two in response to the Warrior’s nine steals. Celtics made 18 turnovers errors compared to six of the Warriors.
Stephen Curry Factor
Stephen Curry has been phenomenal for the Golden State Warriors throughout the season. But he was restricted to 16 points in 37 minutes of play in the fifth game on Monday, following a sensational 43-point performance in Game 4. Curry was 7-for-22 from the field and 0-for-9 from three-point range. Curry hasn’t made a three-point shot in a playoff game for the first time in his career. In his 13-year career, he has appeared in 133 postseason games.
Until Monday, Curry’s lowest point total was a 29-point performance in Game 2 of the series. In the first four games of the series, he is averaging 30.6 points and has made 25 three-pointers.
In Game 5, the Celtics had a chance, but they kept committing turnovers, missing free throws, and allowing the referees to irritate them. Unfortunately, a possible win turns into a double-digit loss, and they’ll need to win Game 6 at home on Thursday to keep the competition alive. If the Celtics win at home, the series will be decided in a winner-take-all Game 7 on Sunday in the Bay Area.
On the other hand, Golden State Warriors are only one win away from the title.