Celtics dominate in Game 1, pummel Mavericks 107-89! Porzingis leads balanced Boston attack

The Boston Celtics sent a loud and clear message in the opening game of the NBA Finals, dismantling the Dallas Mavericks 107-89 at TD Garden on Friday morning (Philippine Time).

This dominant victory extends the Celtics’ winning streak to eight games and maintains their perfect record in Game 1 appearances throughout the playoffs.

Kristaps Porzingis, returning in stellar form, spearheaded a balanced scoring attack for the Celtics. Coming off the bench, he exploded for 20 points and 6 rebounds in just 21 minutes, showcasing his offensive prowess and providing a significant spark for Boston.

Jaylen Brown chipped in with a team-high 22 points, while Jayson Tatum contributed a well-rounded performance of 16 points, 11 rebounds, and 5 assists despite committing 6 turnovers.

The Celtics established a commanding presence early in the game, building a staggering 29-point lead by halftime. The Mavericks, however, displayed resilience in the third quarter, chipping away at the deficit with a 20-6 run fueled by key baskets from Kyrie Irving and Luka Doncic. This surge momentarily closed the gap to eight points, raising concerns for Boston.

The Celtics quickly regrouped after a timeout, silencing the Mavericks’ momentum with a decisive 14-2 run to close out the third quarter. This surge effectively restored their 20-point advantage and put the game out of reach. The Mavericks couldn’t overcome the deficit, falling short with their lowest scoring performance of the playoffs (89 points).

The Celtics’ victory wasn’t solely driven by individual performances; it was a display of remarkable teamwork. They notched 23 assists compared to Dallas’ meager 9, showcasing their superior ball movement and offensive coordination. Additionally, the Celtics set an NBA Finals record with seven different players sinking multiple three-pointers, highlighting their depth and versatility.

Luka Doncic remained the focal point for the Mavericks, leading the team with 30 points and 10 rebounds. However, his shooting from behind the arc was inconsistent (4-of-12), and he shouldered the burden of Dallas’ three-point offense, with all but three of their successful threes coming from him.

With this convincing win, the Boston Celtics have taken a commanding 1-0 lead in the NBA Finals. Game 2 will be played back in Boston on Monday (Philippine Time). Can the Celtics capitalize on their momentum and secure a 2-0 series lead, or will the Dallas Mavericks regroup and bounce back to even the series?