A Matchup-By-Matchup Breakdown Of The 2022 NBA Finals – Who Has The Advantage?

Well, the advertisers are happy. Nothing howls big money like a Golden State Warriors vs. Boston Celtics NBA Finals. But beyond the extravagance, what do we actually have in terms of basketball in this series? The following article will be a matchup-by-matchup breakdown of the finals in a pithy style. We’re here to give you enough information to sound cool at the bar, nothing more. 

Head Coach

Golden State: 

Steve Kerr is arguably the greatest coach in the NBA. Kerr was coached by Lute Olson, Gregg Popovich, and Phil Jackson. Kerr’s taken this experience and turned it into three championships as the head man himself. He also has five rings as a player. 

Grade: A+

Boston: 

A Portland native himself, Ime Udoka has taken his opportunity as a first-year head coach and ran with it. Udoka’s Celtics have posted a 51-31 mark in the regular season, including a 35-12 run to end the year. He’s proven phenomenal thus far. 

Grade: A-

Point Guard

Stephen Curry:

If you don’t know who Stephen Curry is, you should probably seek help. In all seriousness, Curry’s perhaps the greatest shooter in NBA history. He’s also bulked up since entering the league, which should help him compete on both ends of the floor. He’s a two-time MVP, three-time champion, and has the smile of Zeus. 

Grade: A+

Marcus Smart:

Marcus Smart is the current NBA Defensive Player of the Year and is the perfect matchup to try and slow down Curry. However, Smart’s more than a defender. He’s continued to develop throughout his career and is now a reliable option of offense. He averaged 12.1 points in the regular season.

Grade: B+

Shooting Guard

Klay Thompson:

Klay Thompson’s back, Klay Thompson’s back! Yes, he is, but this isn’t the same Thompson from 2019. Since his return from injury, he’s looked a step slow which could hurt him on defense and in shot creation. Nevertheless, he’s still one of the best shooters in the league, a high IQ player, and a calming veteran presence. 

Grade: B+

Jaylen Brown:

Jaylen Brown is of those names that a casual NBA fan might overlook. But make no mistake about it, Brown’s the Tails to Jayson Tatum’s Sonic. Brown’s an efficient scorer and elite shot-maker, and attacks the rim with a fearsome nature. If he can continue to develop on the defensive end of the floor, he could reach superstar status.

Grade: B+

Small Forward

Andrew Wiggins:

Some people may consider Andrew Wiggins a bust, but nothing could be further from the truth. The No. 1 pick in 2014 may not have blossomed into a LeBron James-type talent, but he’s still a baller. Wiggins is an elite perimeter defender, a high-flyer, and can score 20-plus points on any given night. 

Grade: B

Jayson Tatum:

Now that Jayson Tatum has made the finals, he’s the leader of the young wave of talent in the NBA. Tatum’s made the playoffs every year he’s been in the league, a three-time All-Star, and a first-time All-NBA First Team selection this season. He’s also evolved into one of the game’s most clutch players. 

Grade: A

Power Forward

Draymond Green:

Draymond Green is still Draymond Green. The ex-Spartan is a lockdown defender, phenomenal passer, and one of the best ish talkers in the biz. Green’s that guy that everyone loves to hate unless he’s on your team. He’ll likely prove the x-factor in this series. 

Grade: B+

Al Horford:

Yes, Al Horford’s still in the league… 

The 15-year veteran is still around and doing professional things. Horford’s not necessarily good at anything or bad at anything, but he does it all. He can shoot the ball, block shots, and will always hustle. His veteran presence has proven vital for the Celtics.

Grade: B 

Center

Kevon Looney:

Kevon Looney is on the floor to add size and athleticism. Looney’s 6-foot-9 frame is the biggest in the Warriors’ starting lineup, albeit small by NBA standards. His role in this series will likely be to block shots and finish alley-oops. If he tries anything else, he may never see the floor again. 

Grade: B-

Robert Williams:

Robert Williams is on the floor to add size and athleticism. Williams’ 6-foot-9 frame is the biggest in the Celtics’ starting lineup, albeit small by NBA standards. His role in this series will likely be to block shots and finish alley-oops. When healthy, he’s an elite rim protector; however, he’s currently nursing a left knee injury. 

Grade: B

About Nick Bartlett 150 Articles
My Name is Nick Bartlett and I am a staff writer here at OregonSportsNews, The Broadcast Manager at SportsPac12, and I am a youth Basketball Coach at Lakeside Middle School. I’ve had my articles featured in the Seattle PI, OregonLive, and various other publications. I also have my own Podcast/YouTube Show titled “The Nick Bartlett Show.” I am from Shoreline, WA (North Seattle) and I am a graduate of the Murrow College of Communications at Washington State University. For business inquiries, you can find my contact information below. Email: NB206wsu@gmail.com, Twitter: @WordsByBartlett