Boston Celtics responded with a great performance in Gm 3 after a blowout defeat at the hands of the Warriors in Gm2 of the NBA Finals series. According to head coach Ime Udoka, the Celtics’ plan was to attack Stephen Curry early in the 100-116 victory.
He also claimed that the plan helps the opponent’s star to work more in both ends of the floor, which results in more fatigue as the games progress. Curry scored just two points on 1-of-4 shooting in the crucial fourth quarter.
“That’s been throughout the Playoffs. We find matchups that we think are favorable, we’ll attack those. Got some fouls early, so we knew he wouldn’t be as aggressive. Not just that, it’s that you don’t want to let these guys rest on that end of the court,” Udoka said.
“We did it with Durant, did it with Antetokounmpo at times. Even the good defenders, you don’t want to give them one end of the court off. We have guys that play both ends, quite a few scoring threats as well as defensive guys.”
“So putting those guys in action and not letting them off the hook is part of the plan, for sure,” Udoka stated.
Despite his 31 points and his great third quarter, Curry wasn’t at his best defensively allowing the Celtics to put him in tough spots. He finished the game with a minus-17.4 and the Warriors allowed 127 points per 100 possessions when he was on the floor.
Aside from putting the pressure on Curry, the Celtics wanted a good start and according to Udoka Boston was more physical starting the game and set the tone after getting outplayed in Gm 2 of the series.
“We loved the start,” Udoka said. “Other than the turnovers late in the half that allowed them to get back into it a little bit, I thought we were solid overall. Just from a strictly physical standpoint, we matched their intensity better than last game, especially in the third quarter.”