Celtics might flip NBA Finals matchup with Mavericks on its head with a possible lineup tweak

The Boston Celtics will host the Dallas Mavericks in Recreation 1 of the 2024 NBA Finals, a sequence during which one workforce’s decade-plus championship drought will finish. Dallas, led by star guards Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving, will win its first title in 13 years if it could actually safe 4 victories over Boston — which has not received an NBA championship since 2008.

However the Celtics have been enjoying shorthanded for a lot of the postseason, making their romp by way of the Jap Convention this yr much more spectacular. But, the return of one of many workforce’s star gamers might throw the Mavericks‘ defensive plans into disarray proper firstly of the sequence.

Porzingis set to make his return

It has been 36 days since Kristaps Porzingis performed a sport for the Celtics. For the previous a number of weeks, Porzingis has been recovering from a calf pressure as Boston racked up a 12-2 document by way of the East playoffs to succeed in the Finals. The Celtics didn’t evidently miss Porzingis — with out the Latvian sharpshooter, Boston received 9 of 10 playoff video games, 4 of them by not less than 15 factors.

However Porzingis is now set to return for Recreation 1 on Thursday evening after finishing plenty of scrimmages, including one other weapon to the Celtics’ imposing arsenal of shooters.

Throughout media availability on Tuesday, Porzingis slyly indicated that he was largely pain-free, though it isn’t but identified for positive whether or not the previous Maverick will come off the bench or instantly return to educate Joe Mazzulla‘s beginning lineup.

In 57 regular-season video games, Porzingis averaged 20 factors per sport and shot a career-best 52 p.c from the sector. He was additionally one in every of seven Celtics to make not less than 100 3-pointers, and he completed solely behind Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown in factors scored, a snapshot into his total affect in his first yr in Boston.

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