The Boston Celtics, led by Jason Tatum, face the Golden State Warriors, led by Steve Curry, in Game 3 of the NBA Finals on Wednesday, June 8, 2022 (6/8/22) at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.
Fans can watch the action for free with a trial of fuboTV or DirectTV Stream.
The series tied 1-1 after Golden State beat Boston in Game 2, 107-88.
Here is what you need to know:
what or what: NBA Finals, Game 3
From: Celtics vs. Warriors
When: Wednesday, June 8, 2022
where: TD Garden
time: 9 p.m. Eastern time
channel finder: Verizon FuseAnd the DirectTV streamAnd the Comcast XfinityAnd the Spectrum / CharterAnd the Optimization / AlticeAnd the CoxAnd the DIRCTVAnd the DishAnd the hollowAnd the fuboTVAnd the sling.
Live broadcast: fuboTV (free trial), DirectTV Stream (free trial)
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When Steve Kerr looked at the way the Boston Celtics built a championship-caliber team, he saw many similarities with the way the Golden State Warriors reached the NBA Finals in 2015.
Boston built a core through the draft by taking Marcus Smart, Jaylene Brown and Jason Tatum over the four-year stint from 2014-2017 and adding the pieces needed to get over the hump this year to reach the finals.
Awaiting the Celtics in Game 1 Thursday night will be the Kerr’s Warriors, who make their sixth trip in eight years led by homegrown cores Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.
“Traditionally, that’s how you’re supposed to work in the NBA,” Kerr said. “If you look over the years, you’ve built a team through the draft, you take those through the playoffs, you climb up and then you get to the finals. Our team is built somewhat the same way. … I think that’s good for the sport.”
This approach rewards the growing trend around the big star movement as teams have tried to build more through agency and free trades than through the draft.
Both teams have eight players on the roster originally obtained in the draft and these are the first Finals since Chicago-Utah in 1998, according to ESPN, when the top three finalists from both teams made their NBA debuts with their current teams .
The similarities between the two teams were not complete, and the biggest discrepancy was the experience. Led by Curry, Thompson and Green, the Warriors have played a total of 123 Finals games on their roster than any game with the Celtics, who have lost in the Eastern Conference Finals three times in the past five years.
“Obviously there’s nerves, adrenaline, anxiety, nerves – like everything in terms of playing feelings at this point,” Curry said of his debut in the Finals. “That first game is sometimes all over the place because of that. Once you settle down, it’s all about basketball, as it usually is.”
Celtics coach Im Odoka, who was an assistant to two teams that went to the finals in San Antonio, isn’t too concerned, noting the post-season experience his top players have accumulated in recent years.
Boston won two Game 7s games just to get here this season, defeating defending champion Milwaukee at home in the second round and winning in Miami in the conference final.
“I think once you’re out of the initial media circus, once you’re out of the media circus and the intensity and how exaggerated everything is, obviously it’s not much different when you get on the field,” he said.
First year coach
Odoka is the fifth coach since 2015 to reach the Finals in his first year as an NBA coach, with three of the previous four winning all. Kerr defeated Cleveland’s David Platt in a first-year NBA coaches battle in the 2015 Finals and then lost to Ty Lowe and the Caves the following year. Toronto’s Nick Norse also won the title in his first year as an NBA coach against the Warriors in 2019.
Prior to that, the only first-year coaches to win the NBA Finals since the 1950s were Pat Riley (1982 Lakers) and Paul Westhead (1980 Lakers).
inspiration – inspiration
Golden State owner Joe Lacob was a minority owner in the Celtics before taking over the battered Warriors in 2010. At the time, he said he hoped the Warriors could rival the success of franchises like the Celtics and Lakers.
“We were trying to change the direction of this franchise at the time,” Lacob said. “So the first thing you need to do is set goals.”
With a chance of a fourth title in Golden State’s sixth trip to the Finals in the past eight years, Lacob’s lofty goals have become a reality but he is far from satisfied.
“It will take many years of ownership to come close to what the Celtics have achieved in terms of all the great decades of success,” Lacob said.
cooking at home
Curry said early in the playoffs that he wanted the Warriors to find an identity at the Chase Center in the 3-year-old’s first playoff round. Golden State achieved it, winning all nine home games and outsmarting the opponent by 14.6 points per game. The Warriors are the fifth team to score 9-0 or better at home to reach the final.
Both teams have had success on the road, with Boston winning seven of their nine away games to date, and the Warriors winning at least one road game in 26 consecutive playoff series.
The Warriors finished the last round without three key players – Andre Iguodala (neck), Gary Payton II (left elbow) and Otto Porter Jr (left foot) – who could provide the necessary defensive assist on the flanks against Tatum and Brown.
All three managed to train this week and were listed as suspects in the first game. Iguodala has missed the last 12 games, Payton has been out for nine and Porter has been out in the last two games of the Western Conference Finals.
The Celtics are dealing with a major injury of their own with midfielder Robert Williams III hampered by an infection in his left knee. Williams played the last four games against the Heat but was not at his best. It is listed as questionable.
The smart injury report was held up after dealing with a right ankle sprain in the last round.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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Ryan Novozinsky can be reached at [email protected].