NBA Finals: Celtics vs Mavs

Who wins?

  • Celtics in 4

    Votes: 22 5.0%
  • Celtics in 5

    Votes: 120 27.3%
  • Celtics in 6

    Votes: 222 50.6%
  • Celtics in 7

    Votes: 52 11.8%
  • Mavs in 4-5

    Votes: 3 0.7%
  • Mavs in 6-7

    Votes: 20 4.6%

  • Total voters
    439
  • Poll closed .

Cellar-Door

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Mavs adjustments seem obvious... Might not win given talent but...

Post Luka more, it was very effective in limited doses.
Stay home on shooters, can't let the Celtics swing to open 38-40% 3pt shooters.
Let your guards get cooked. Need better effort, but also play off, let Tatum and Brown take dribble 3s and 2s.

Edit-forgot.. Oddball wing/big screens to get Horford and Porzingis back on the bigs for Luka/Lively PnR
 

kfoss99

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Mavs adjustments seem obvious... Might not win given talent but...

Post Luka more, it was very effective in limited doses.
Stay home on shooters, can't let the Celtics swing to open 38-40% 3pt shooters.
Let your guards get cooked. Need better effort, but also play off, let Tatum and Brown take dribble 3s and 2s.
Timpf on his video mentioned having Irving bring the ball up the court to initiate the offense faster.
 

RorschachsMask

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The only way the Mavs can stop Tatum from driving is trapping him, which would end quite poorly for them. He’s destroyed them off the dribble in every matchup this season. For the season he averaged 9.1 drives per game, that shot up to 15 per game in the two regular season games, and 18 the other night. He’s either too strong for their wings, or too fast for their bigs.

And because they’re willing to let Jaylen go 1 on 1, they have no chance to keep him from getting to the rim.

I know they will try things, but in game 1, they sold out as much as they could to stop Tatum from driving, outside of trapping on the catch. Celtics are just an extremely bad matchup for Dallas, defensively.
 

slamminsammya

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I wonder if a team could bait Tatum into taking those elbow jumpers a lot. I think you’d want to purposely have a small on him which he usually posts up and then give him a cushion if he catches at the elbow or close. Maybe he’d just drive with a head of steam in that case.
 

RorschachsMask

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I wonder if a team could bait Tatum into taking those elbow jumpers a lot. I think you’d want to purposely have a small on him which he usually posts up and then give him a cushion if he catches at the elbow or close. Maybe he’d just drive with a head of steam in that case.
I would play him straight up, if I were Dallas. I know teams are pretty clearly terrified of that, but the alternative is the Celts taking 40+ threes a game, mostly pretty open.
 

PedroKsBambino

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A couple of us have been saying this for a while—and we all hear Tommy’s voice for the words—-when the Celtics push pace under control they are unguardable. Especially by Dallas, who is built for half court D
 

Ed Hillel

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I would play him straight up, if I were Dallas. I know teams are pretty clearly terrified of that, but the alternative is the Celts taking 40+ threes a game, mostly pretty open.
Won’t work. They have to design their entire D to compensate for Luka’s horseshit effort on that end, so there will be help planted inside no matter what and at least one open shooter once Tatum wins off the dribble.

There’s no fix against against this Celtics team as long as Luka is on the floor.
 

lovegtm

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Why is the assumption that Dallas will have an answer on defense? They have some good personnel, and are very good at designing schemes that can help and rotate behind when a team has guys who can't shoot/drive or post up.

That just isn't the case here. There's no guy they can exploit to make their (frankly kinda vanilla) schemes work.

That's fine when you're racking up regular season wins, or playing Russ, SloMo, Giddey, or Gobert. Doesn't work here.

They still could win 1-2 games based on shooting variance on both ends, but the fundamentals of the series are hard to overcome.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Ed Hillel

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Trying to bait Tatum into taking bad shots. Not a bad strategy when you know your defense has no chance if he makes the right basketball play.
 

Kliq

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Why is the assumption that Dallas will have an answer on defense? They have some good personnel, and are very good at designing schemes that can help and rotate behind when a team has guys who can't shoot/drive or post up.

That just isn't the case here. There's no guy they can exploit to make their (frankly kinda vanilla) schemes work.

That's fine when you're racking up regular season wins, or playing Russ, SloMo, Giddey, or Gobert. Doesn't work here.

They still could win 1-2 games based on shooting variance on both ends, but the fundamentals of the series are hard to overcome.
I was listening to Lowe and Tim Legler and both of them seemed really down on what Dallas can do defensively to stop Boston. On offense its easy to say Kyrie can make more shots, and Luka will do a better job diagnosing the defense, but there doesn't seem to be a lot of options for the Mavs to fix their defense outside of the Celtics playing very poorly.
 

Dr. Gonzo

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Trying to bait Tatum into taking bad shots. Not a bad strategy when you know your defense has no chance if he makes the right basketball play.
Exactly. When your entire defense has to collapse to stop JT, you’d rather he take a tough shot than find the wide open man.
 

Cellar-Door

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I was listening to Lowe and Tim Legler and both of them seemed really down on what Dallas can do defensively to stop Boston. On offense its easy to say Kyrie can make more shots, and Luka will do a better job diagnosing the defense, but there doesn't seem to be a lot of options for the Mavs to fix their defense outside of the Celtics playing very poorly.
Yeah I do think the best option is to have Luka surrender 3s, sink low to try and avoid blowbys and see if the Jays will just take the minimal to no contest above the break 3s
 

Seels

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why are they playing sunday night?

I hate the way sports do scheduling now.
 

InstaFace

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If I were Kidd... How do you stop or slow down the Celtics? We've talked about the Mavericks hitting more shots and making the game more half court and being more physical and maybe containing the dribble more by backing off, and so on, but ok you have the Celtics in front of you in the half court with their best five on the floor so what do you do?

Do you relax the so-called Tatum rules? I think this is a possibility as we've seen Tatum is so used to this by now he's feels very comfortable. Do you treat the Celtics offense like the Celtics defense is treating you (let Luka be Luka as a scorer)? Relax the Tatum rules. Don't load up as much. Let Tatum get his. Allow him to score 30-40. Make him a scorer and less as a playmaker. Do all the things mentioned above but in the half court, play more 5-on-5 on defense. Approach every Celtics player as if they are a weapon on offense. If we take away guys like White and Holiday and Brown, can Tatum beat us?

But, therein lies the problem for Kidd. You still have to contend with KP. Horford in the post is a win for the Mavericks. KP is not. IDK how you let Tatum cook but also contain KP. And, then, you have the problem of White and Holiday and Brown who are entirely capable of getting paint touches whenever they want doing just that and making tough shots one-on-one.

I'm glad I'm not Kidd for many reasons.
If I'm Kidd, the card I play is excess physicality (something he's had a lot of practice with at home!). If Tatum is going to cover the 5s to take away the lob, you make sure those 5s rough him up. Who cares if they get called for a few fouls, that'll happen anyway, and until they see that it's a deliberate tactic, they'll be hesitant to call a few, you might get away with a bit. Stop the drives at the basket by Tatum by any means necessary. Make the refs throw one or the other of them out of the game for his second flagrant, that level of roughing up. You can bring in a third big like Kleber to take some additional shots at him, too. Just make Tatum hurt, Bad-Boy Pistons style.

While completely unsporting, this might have any of the following effects on Tatum:

- More hesitant to finish drives / looking to kick it out earlier, before he gets a midair shove that lands him on his shoulder. Allows you to stay home more on perimeter shooters.
- Might affect his jumper. Also means after a bit of this, you can cheat up closer to him, assuming he's going to try the perimeter 3 more often.
- Could affect his decisionmaking as he's initiating, especially choosing to initiate drives rather than perimeter passing or screening actions. We don't have anyone who can stay in front of him 1v1 on drives, so making him do literally anything else with the ball is a win.

On offense, I think you plan some more Kyrie iso (he's the only one quick enough to get by our guards), and maybe try some 2-bigs possessions so you can send "whoever Horford is on" or "whoever Porzingis is not on" in for the rim-running and lob plays.
 

Cellar-Door

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Actually I think the talk about best player defends best is Kidd trying to get Tatum to demand the Luka assignment because Tatum on Lively broke DAL's offense and there is no easy fix
 

Over Guapo Grande

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That crazy good stretch of defense by JB that turned the 3rd Q around was him in the "take away the lob" role. So Tatum and Brown switching roles wouldn't be much of a net negative, I don't think.
 

RorschachsMask

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That crazy good stretch of defense by JB that turned the 3rd Q around was him in the "take away the lob" role. So Tatum and Brown switching roles wouldn't be much of a net negative, I don't think.
I think that those two plays were just Jaylen knowing he could leave his man to try. Would have to watch again to see though.

It’s a role that takes a ton of discipline, while Jaylen is better suited on ball. Him on Luka and Tatum defending the lob threat is by far our best course of action. It’s like a LB/DE setting the edge in football, while some guys are better at just getting to the QB.
 

lovegtm

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Yeah I do think the best option is to have Luka surrender 3s, sink low to try and avoid blowbys and see if the Jays will just take the minimal to no contest above the break 3s
Yup, if Dallas comes back, it will be because they execute a version of this well.

It's the Draymond Strategy against Jaylen, but executed more subtly and with more precision.
 

RorschachsMask

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Yup, if Dallas comes back, it will be because they execute a version of this well.

It's the Draymond Strategy against Jaylen, but executed more subtly and with more precision.
You mean Dallas shouldn’t make a show of it by standing 10 feet away?
 

lovegtm

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I’m less concerned, especially with KP back. Tatum is going to make the right play, and I think Jaylen is getting there.
The only challenge is if the right play is to shoot an iso 3, because the defense is sagging so hard. Jaylen destroyed GSW by taking those, but you might have to be willing to take 10+ of them to break the strat.
 

lovegtm

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That said, literally no one has defended Tatum like this in the past 5 years, and there's a reason for that.
 

RorschachsMask

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The only challenge is if the right play is to shoot an iso 3, because the defense is sagging so hard. Jaylen destroyed GSW by taking those, but you might have to be willing to take 10+ of them to break the strat.
if they’re getting clean looks, I trust that a good amount will go in, especially Tatum. I just don’t see a path for Dallas outside of the Celtics going incredibly cold for a game.

I’m even more confident after what Kidd tried earlier lol.
 

Auger34

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I’m not sure it’s that deep with what Kidd was doing. He’s basically being a troll. Try to cause some internal strife, rankle Joe Mazz a bit.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Why is the assumption that Dallas will have an answer on defense? They have some good personnel, and are very good at designing schemes that can help and rotate behind when a team has guys who can't shoot/drive or post up.

That just isn't the case here. There's no guy they can exploit to make their (frankly kinda vanilla) schemes work.

That's fine when you're racking up regular season wins, or playing Russ, SloMo, Giddey, or Gobert. Doesn't work here.

They still could win 1-2 games based on shooting variance on both ends, but the fundamentals of the series are hard to overcome.
This is basically what Legler said, as Kliq pointed out. DAL's problem was that they couldn't keep BOS in front of them so DAL was in rotation all night and they couldn't keep up with the ball (didn't mention that only 4 guys were actually rotating but maybe they will before the series is over).

How many guys on DAL's roster can stay in front of JT or JB? Jones Jr. and who else? Maybe Exum on a good night?

DAL's defense is what it is. DAL is going to have to outscore BOS to win. Good luck with that four times in the next six games.
 

Auger34

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This is basically what Legler said, as Kliq pointed out. DAL's problem was that they couldn't keep BOS in front of them so DAL was in rotation all night and they couldn't keep up with the ball (didn't mention that only 4 guys were actually rotating but maybe they will before the series is over).

How many guys on DAL's roster can stay in front of JT or JB? Jones Jr. and who else? Maybe Exum on a good night?

DAL's defense is what it is. DAL is going to have to outscore BOS to win. Good luck with that four times in the next six games.
Dallas needs 2-3 players to go nuclear in order to win and I think Kyrie has to be one of them. I really don’t see it happening
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Dallas needs 2-3 players to go nuclear in order to win and I think Kyrie has to be one of them. I really don’t see it happening
Agree. Just to repeat myself from the other thread, I think Kyrie comes out very aggressive in Game B and hits a bunch of shots in the 1Q. But I don't think either Kyrie or Luka are going to sustain something like through 4Qs against a defense as talented as BOS.
 

Ed Hillel

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Also, Al should have said he was the best player on the team and walked off.