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Celtics v Warriors NBA Finals preview, predictions & best bets

2022 NBA Finals betting preview

After a long NBA season that started with 30 teams, only the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics remain standing. They traveled through the gauntlet that is the NBA Playoffs and will now square off for ultimate glory.

The Celtics haven’t won a championship since 2008, when they had Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen. With that core, they also lost their last finals appearance in 2010.

The Warriors haven’t had to wait quite as long. They made the finals five times in a row from 2015 to 2019 and their last win was in 2018. From that team, they have largely the same core but are no longer with Kevin Durant, who is now on the Brooklyn Nets.

It’s going to be a great series, and here are some picks for the 2022 NBA Finals.

NBA Finals outright winner: Boston Celtics

This series is as even as it gets. The Warriors have the pedigree, which is probably why they are favorites. But the Celtics have had the better season. After a rough start, the Celtics have been the best team in the NBA after the All-Star break and will come into this series with a lot of confidence. The Warriors were good all season and have a good mix of veterans and youth. However, during the playoffs, the Celtics faced better competition, and while it was sketchy at times, they survived and advanced. They will be ready for the finals and it will be an awesome series. Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown have become legitimate superstars, and beyond them, the Celtics have a myriad of strong role-players who are ferocious on defense.

That defensive intensity should be the difference in this series. The Warriors are a great offensive team with Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Jordan Poole. However, Golden State have a tendency to turn the ball over, and those mistakes will be their downfall. Draymond Green is their best defensive player, and while he is a great defender, the rest of the team can struggle to stay in front of their opponents. The Celtics should be able to score relatively easily and it will come down to their defensive acumen. Defense is the calling card for this Boston team and should be the difference in this NBA Finals series.

Boston Celtics to win the series


NBA Finals MVP: Jaylen Brown

Jaylen Brown is on the third line of NBA Finals MVP betting, and it makes sense. In all likelihood, if the Warriors win, Steph Curry will win the award. And if Boston win, it will likely go to Jayson Tatum, their best player. However, at +1000 with Bovada, Jaylen is worth a shot. He has proven himself to be a superstar and could top the scoring for Boston if Tatum is locked up. Brown also plays a big role on defense and rebounding. If he gets a lot of blocks, steals and rebounds to go along with a good scoring average, he will take home this award. At this number, it’s worth a shot, even if it’s not super likely.

Jaylen Brown for NBA Finals MVP


Top scoring performance in NBA Finals: Steph Curry

Curry and Tatum are joint favorites for this bet. Whichever player racks up the most individual points in a single game in the series will cash this bet, and for that, Curry is the best option. Curry can absolutely light up the scoreboard and his acumen for hitting threes makes him the pick. If he can have one game where he shines from long range, it’s unlikely other players in this series can match that. Curry has the potential to hit eight threes in a game and tally as much as 50 points. While Tatum also has the talent to drop a 50-point game, Draymond Green will be his primary defender and should keep Tatum from going nuclear.

Steph Curry highest-scoring game


Best rebounds-per-game average in NBA Finals: Al Horford

Al Horford is the favorite for this bet, and it makes sense. The Warriors do not have a clear big-man who will gobble up rebounds outside of Kevon Looney. While Looney is a great rebounder, it’s unlikely he plays a ton as the Warriors like to use Green at center. When that happens, the Warriors do not have a distinct center and the rebounds are distributed among the rest of the team. For the Celtics, Horford is a guaranteed starter and will be playing a lot of minutes. Robert Williams, another big man for the Celtics, has been injured throughout this playoffs, and it’s unclear whether he will be able to suit up for the whole series. This will leave Horford, a guy who didn’t have less than seven rebounds in a game against Miami, as the clear rebounder for the Celtics. ‘Big Al’ also had two games of 14 rebounds in the Miami series and should be dominant on the glass yet again. At this number, Horford to lead in rebounds is a steal, no matter if the Celtics win the series or not.

Al Horford top RPG average


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