Preview 2022 Qualifiers | Boston (2) – Brooklyn (7)

Without shaking too much, the Nets checked for their place in the playoffs against the Cavaliers, after a controlled “play in”. A success that puts them against the Celtics in the first round. In other words, the best team in the league since All-Star Weekend, who hasn’t tried to avoid crossing paths with his teammates. Kevin Durant And Keri Irving.

For one as for the other, this poster has no gift anyway, because Boston like Brooklyn has the weapons to go to the address. However, one of these suitors will have to leave prematurely on vacation, with a bitter taste in the mouth, and it is not excluded that annoyed Happen or occur…

It must be said that with the Irving/Durant duo at the top, Networks clearly looks like a scarecrow in the Eastern Conference. Even with their impressive collective striking power, the Celts could fret, at the dawn of this series that promises to be explosive and smells of vengeance.

Celtics Show

Swatches: Smart, J. Brown, J. Tatum, A. Horford, and De Thies.
Alternatives: White, P. Pritchard, N. Stauskas, J. Morgan, A. Nesmith, S.; Hauser, J. Williams, M. Fitts, L. Cornett.
Absence: R. Williams.
the coach: First Odoka.

If Robert Williams isn’t sure he can hold his place in the series, the Celtics stay strong under the boards, with Al Horford-Daniel Theiss racket playing together. From the outside, it’s clear that Jason Tatum and Jaylen Brown will be responsible for branding their squad’s support, while Marcus Smart (possible 2022 defender) will, all too often, be in charge, to transform and appoint It’s attack. tone in defense.

Off the bench, Ime Udoka can also count on brave soldiers, like the versatile Derrick White and Grant Williams, but also in positions, like Payton Pritchard and Aaron Nesmith. It’s hard to imagine other elements getting significant minutes with Boston, because the Massachusetts Series rookie coach has been playing in tight rotations for several weeks.

strength point

Group dynamics. Complicated starters (11th place in the East on Jan. 16, with 22 wins and 22 losses), the Celtics repackaged to succeed the second part of the season with great fanfare: 29-9, including 17-5 after an All-star holiday weekend! So much so that they (briefly) held the head of their conference at the end of March. With the best defense in the league and sixth best attacking in the country, the C players have played most of their games over the past two months, so their morale has inflated. A blessing, when attacking these qualifiers where you better be solid collectively.

Defense, especially in solitude. The Celtics attack the playoffs with the best defense in the NBA, even without Robert Williams. Above all, they have five main players made up of good defenders who can switch and are difficult to attack in isolation. It is a pattern that could thus pose major problems for the Networks, whose attack depends precisely and, to a large extent, on the isolation of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.

Weak points

The absence of Robert Williams. Libero of Celtics Defensive System “Time Lord” injured his knee at the end of March and his participation in the series was seriously jeopardized. Anything but good news for C, who have to deal without their best in-house defender. Because while Al Horfords and Daniel Theis could do well in the area, they don’t have the same influence as Williams and the Nets likely to put pressure on this alleged weakness. Anyway, that’s what Bruce Brown suggested this week, much to Kevin Durant’s chagrin…

A potentially coughing attack? Even if the Celtics’ offensive line-up was more compelling towards the end of the season, with a genuine willingness to share the ball and benefit from the interest generated by Jason Tatum and Jaylen Brown, Boston could still relax (a lot). On one face to one of its two offensive leaders. To see if this trend will return in a tense and hesitant “Money Time”…

net width

Swatches: K. Irving, C.; Carey, b. Brown, K.; Durant, A.; Drummond.
Alternatives: Dragek, B. Mills, Duke Jr., C. Thomas, K. Edwards, D. Sharpe, B. Griffin, L. Aldridge, N. Claxton.
Absence: J Harris.
Unknown: B. Simmons.
the coach: S Nash.

Except for surprise, Steve Nash has to paint a lot on the bodies of its occupants. It has to be said that the Nets’ seat has yet to satisfy, between the indecision of Goran Dragic, who is out of health protocol, Patty Mills’ confidence crunch, and the erratic rookie Cameron Thomas and David Duke. Junior, Kessler Edwards, Daeron Sharp, or the slow-motion performances of Blake Griffin and LaMarcus Aldridge, even Nick Claxton.

The main weapons available to Brooklyn will be surrounded by complementary, high-quality “roles”, such as Seth Curry, Bruce Brown, Andre Drummond, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. But what could change the game in the series is the presence of Ben Simmons, who is likely to be announced from Game 3.

Even in a playing time of 15-20 minutes, the Australian can achieve positive rebounding, defensiveness and creativity. Areas where the New York franchise is not the most effective.

strength point

Irving/Durant duo. The “match” against the Cavaliers proved it: it seems difficult to dream of a better tandem to handle the big meetings. Throughout their careers, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant have shown that they are doing better than ever with their backs to the wall. With 57.3 points this season, both the All-Star team and their winger are the most goal-scoring pairs in the league, and their attacking prowess will be of paramount importance in this series. As the nets will depend a lot on the two in the playoffs, with no advantage at home and against the Celtics collective. Superstar.

Aggressive recoil. The nets aren’t very long but they are brave to bounce back. Thus, Bruce Brown and Andre Drummond are particularly aggressive in reclaiming “Second Chances” and Im Odoka specifically mentioned this point among his priorities for the series.

Weak points

regularity. If the Nets’ attack is running at full speed with Kyrie Irving, the same can’t be said for their defense. Combined with a lack of team experience, this is also what has greatly hampered the New York franchise since the start of the season. We saw it again against the Cavaliers: Once Kevin Durant took a break, Brooklyn derailed offensively. Anything but perfect when you know Steve Nash’s guys aren’t defensive imperialists. The greater the adversity, the more monetary mistakes are paid, and the Celtics, intractable for two months, will not fail to exploit these moments of weakness.

Significant lack of continuity. Vaccination and choppy status for Kyrie Irving, James Harden transfers, injuries to Kevin Durant and Joe Harris, consistently late appearances for Ben Simmons… Steve Nash has almost never been able to work with the same batch of the season, and that’s necessarily palpable in his team game. The systems are pretty simple, and incorporating the Australian leader in the middle of qualifying, on the go, is another test. I’m not sure there is enough talent to make up for this problem.

key chain

defensive toughness. In defense, there is no doubt that the Celtics (first in Defensive classification) Do not put in the same category of networks (20 inches Defensive classification). However, nothing says that they will be able to put down the two genius attackers Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. However it will be necessary to cross the New York obstacle because, in the offensive matches, Brooklyn’s chances increase exponentially. Brooklyn who, meanwhile, will have to find a way to slow down Jason Tatum, Jaylene Brown and others, hoping to keep the shock going for the duration of the series. Place your bet!

regular class

Boston 3-1

November 24: Boston – Brooklyn (104-123)
February 8: Brooklyn – Boston (91-126)
February 24: Brooklyn – Boston (106-129)
March 6: Boston – Brooklyn (126-120)

judgment

For two months, the Celtics had accumulated victories, most of the time with a difference of at least 10 points. Collectively, a veritable war machine was formed in Massachusetts, in the wake of Jason Tatum, Jaylene Brown and Marcus Smart, better than ever, and under the thumbs of Aime Odoka, who knew how to quell early season reviews. Defensively or offensively, Boston players recite their ranges night after night, without departing from their principles, and one begins to wonder if this team isn’t on its way to its first game. finals Since 2010. It was unimaginable three months ago…

So it is a group confident in their strength that shows themselves in the skin of the favorite, in the face of these unexpected networks. Certainly led by Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, the New York franchise is limited though, particularly on a team and defensive level. This is also one of the big questions in this series: Can a group from Brooklyn position themselves at least On the same level as C, collectively and defensively? The Irving/Durant duo will surely have an offensive success, but behind them, the “role players” will have to raise their voices on both sides of the floor. In addition to forcing the Tatum/Brown duo to drop the ball…

Given the dynamics of the Celtics and the Nets, and the certainty of every team in the game, we’re betting on Boston to reach the conference semi-finals and take on either Milwaukee or Chicago. Success would coincidentally be synonymous with revenge for the 17 NBA title formation, wiped out by Steve Nash’s men in 2021…

Boston 4-2

Schedule

Game 1: In Boston, Sunday, April 17 (9:30 p.m. in France)
Game 2: In Boston, Wednesday, April 20 (1:00, from Wednesday night to Thursday in France)
The third game: In Brooklyn, Saturday 23 April (time to be determined)
Fourth game: In Brooklyn, Monday, April 25 (time to be determined)
5* game: In Boston, Wednesday, April 27 (TBD)
6* game: In Brooklyn, Friday, April 29 (TBD)
Game 7 *: In Boston, Sunday, May 1 (TBD)

* If necessary.

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