Posting this tweet is all I will say on the this, because I want to focus on basketball.

National anthem

Cee-Lo Green is performing the National Anthem. So much for “cancel culture.”

I am not going to grade this.

The pregame montage is on the Warriors: the narrative has shifted to them as the ones whose series is on the line. The Celtics have, in a way, done their job in guaranteeing a road split, so the pressure’s all on the Warriors.

Oddly enough, this is why I have Golden State, I don’t trust Boston when they start feeling good about themselves, that’s when they start committing unforced errors and … wait, am I describing myself here as well?

Hopefully, I recover from this accidental personal insight in time for Opening Tip, which is coming soon.

A note, the shirts that the Celtics and Warriors were wearing while warming up weren’t just platitudes, they included links to relevant organizations.

These are the shirts that Steve Kerr and Ime Udoka were wearing before the game. All the information currently on the Jumbotron here at Chase… pic.twitter.com/xCQ1kYpxPT

– Sean Grande (@SeanGrandePBP) June 5, 2022

Golden State Warriors starting lineup

Steph Curry, G

Klay Thompson, G / F

Draymond Green, F / C

Kevon Looney, C

Andrew Wiggins, F

Boston Celtics starting lineup

Jayson Tatum, G / F

Jaylen Brown, G / F

Marcus Smart, G

Al Horford, F / C

Robert Williams III, F / C

Stephen A. Smith got beeped! That is your news about this pregame show.

A quick bit of “around the league” news: Quin Snyder has stepped down as coach of the Utah Jazz, citing the team’s need for new blood. He’s probably right, given that the team is perhaps overdue an overhaul.

It’s amusing that he waited until the Los Angeles Lakers hired their own head coach before making the announcement. Certainly, they would have at least wanted an interview.

Predictions

I had the Celtics winning one of two on the road to start this series, so ultimately, I think I’m going to be right here in a more general sense. Of course, I had them winning this game originally, not Game 1. So, in a more accurate sense of the term, I was wr- wr- wrong the first time. Whatever it all will come out in the wash.

So to make my broader prediction true, I must predict the Warriors winning today to even out the series. Maybe Warriors 101-98 Boston Celtics. Yes, I have this one coming down to the wire.

Yep, this is how my brain works. Nope, I have no real basketball argument to back that statement up other than “vibes” (and the fact that the Celtics have had a problem with, uh, not riding momentum after big wins this postseason). This just feels like a long, chaotic series so why not guess on whatever result ruins as many narratives as possible. That’s just my own prediction, you can either email hunter.felt.freelance@theguardia.com or tweet @HunterFelt with a prediction of your own and we’ll include it here as we make our way to Opening Tip.

Pregame Wear

Both the Celtics and Warriors wore orange shirts before the game with “End Gun Violence” messages. A nice gesture and it’s always nice to see two teams come together shortly before they dedicate the next few hours to destroying each other.

There is a show called “The Final Straw” that ABC is doing now (produced by Peyton Manning) and … this is just Jenga: The Television Show?

Injury report

Potentially bad news for Golden State. Game 1 featured a clean injury slate (even Boston’s Sam Hauser ended up playing, albeit when the benches were emptied), but Game 2 will not. A few hours ago it was announced that veteran Andre Iguodala would be out with knee swelling. He’s really been more of a part-time player for the Warriors, but he’s still been a capable contributor and the Warriors would rather have him available than not.

The good news however far outweighs the bad. After being available in an emergency capacity for Game 1, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr has said that Gary Payton II should be available to play off the bench tonight. The son of defensive whiz Gary “The Glove” Payton (in case you wanted to feel old), Payton II (who has been nicknamed “The Mitten”) has been a key part of the Warriors’ resurgence this season.

Preamble

You can’t predict basketball. When the Golden State Warriors built up a 12-point fourth-quarter lead on the Boston Celtics, I predicted thusly: “So, can Boston make up a 12-point deficit? Not impossible, but Tatum is going to need a big game and the defense will have to be flawless. ”

Well, I was half right. The Celtics did indeed have to play flawless defense, holding the most potent offense in the Western Conference to a mere 16 points, but Tatum didn’t score a single point from there on out. In fact, he only scored 12 points on Thursday, the same amount of assists that he dished out (credit Tatum for not letting an off shooting night from preventing him from helping out his team in other ways).

So, the Warriors lost a double-digit lead late, at home, on a day where they had done all they could do to contain their opponent’s best player. Now they’re down 0-1 in an NBA Finals where nearly everybody (including this writer) had them as favorites. That means today’s Game 2 is the biggest game they’ve had to play since Kevin Durant was still in the lineup.

So, do they come back tonight with a huge win or do the Celtics ride the momentum of their shocking Game 1 win and take a stranglehold on the 2022 NBA season. I have my own predictions, but I’ll wait and let you guess what they could be. Let me just say that this postseason is like the final season of “Better Call Saul.” It’s not going to go the way any of us think.

What you can predict is that we’ll use your thoughts, questions and / or concerns throughout this liveblog. You can email them to hunter.felt.freelance@theguardian.com or tweet them to @HunterFelt and we’ll post them throughout today’s game. It’s Game 2 of the 2022 NBA Finals between the Boston Celtics and the Golden State Warriors at San Francisco’s Chase Center. Opening tip is scheduled at sometime after 8:00 pm EST but we’ll be back well before then with further updates, predictions and an occasional amusing timewaster.

Hunter will be here shortly. In the meantime, here are a few thoughts on Game 1:

Sometimes it’s hard to find the right words, whether competing in the National Spelling Bee or Thursday night’s other high-profile, high-pressure contest, the first game of the NBA finals.

Al Horford kept it simple. No fancy phraseology, no straining for meaning. “My guys found me tonight and I knocked ’em down,” Horford said on ABC after his central role in the Boston Celtics’ stunning and strange 120-108 victory over the Golden State Warriors. “A lot of fun.”

A contest that began with the Stephen Curry three-point production line working overtime ended with the much less predictable spectacle of Horford scoring from distance and inspiring his teammates to do the same as they overturned a 12-point deficit in the fourth quarter.

A 15-year NBA veteran making his first finals appearance a day before his 36th birthday, Horford top-scored for the Celtics with 26 points, including a career-high six three-pointers. In the joint-most dominant quarter in NBA finals history, the Celtics were rampant towards the end, sinking seven three-pointers in succession on the way to going nine for 12.

You can read the full report below:

By a8okg

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