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2024 NBA Finals Matchup Preview: Boston Celtics vs. Dallas Mavericks

Updated: Jun 12

Brian Babineau/NBAE

The 2024 NBA Finals will include an entertaining matchup against the Boston Celtics and the Dallas Mavericks. The Celtics find themselves in the Finals for the second time in three years, following a series sweep in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Indiana Pacers. The Mavericks are making their first Finals appearance since their championship run back in 2011 against the Miami Heat.

Leading up to this series there are so many storylines that fill up this action-packed matchup. Basketball fans will appreciate being able to see two top five players go head to head, in Celtics forward Jayson Tatum and Mavericks guard Luka Doncic. Both players were selected for the All-NBA first team this season. 

The return to Boston for Kyrie Irving

For Mavericks starting guard Kyrie Irving comes a full circle moment, heading back to Boston now as an opponent. This time though Irving will be deemed as a nemesis with no appreciation being shown from the Celtics faithful. Kyrie wore the green and white for two seasons before jumping ship to play with the Brooklyn Nets. 

The Kyrie playing for the Mavericks now comes with a premium perk for Luka Doncic and Co. Irving has been the centerpiece this Mavs team has needed to help support Doncic on his journey to winning an NBA Championship. Having championship-winning experience from his playing days with the Cleveland Cavaliers will help Irving be able to guide this Mavericks team through the storm that the NBA Finals may bring. 

Will Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown quiet the noise?

The two top dogs for the Celtics have been Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Both Tatum and Brown have appeared in six Eastern Conference Finals in eight years to go along with their 2022 NBA Finals appearance against the Golden State Warriors.

They have gone through the fire together and have fallen short every time, but this season feels so right for the dynamic duo to get it done. Accomplishing so much at such a young age has placed pressure on whether this Celtics team can win with Tatum and Brown at the forefront.

With the reconstruction done around Tatum and Brown, they have the threats to send the Mavericks home. If the tandem utilizes the assets at their disposal they can find themselves being able to take over the game in a tremendous way this Finals series. 

The X-Factors that will be pivotal!

The firepower for both teams going into this Finals is very emphatic. The versatility on this Mavericks roster is relentless and shows no fear of the pressure thrown their way. The frontcourt pairing of P.J. Washington and Daniel Gafford for the Mavs is an electrifying force to be reckoned with defensively.

Knowing that Doncic and Irving can score effortlessly on the court or toss up a lob to one of these two in the paint creates matchup issues.

Boston possesses multiple Swiss army knives in guards Jrue Holiday and Derrick White. This backcourt has been huge for the Celtics all season long on both sides of the ball.

Holiday's championship experience from his tenure with the Milwaukee Bucks will be leverage for Boston in their hopes of being on the winning side. 

Overall we have a very entertaining NBA Finals series among these two teams. Only one team can be the last one standing. For both teams, there are implications for the legacies of marquee players and franchises.

Game 1 takes place Thursday, June 6th at the TD Garden in Boston.


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