As you may know, the Celtics are the only team in the NBA over the passed 3 seasons that doesn’t have a losing record versus the Warriors (3-3). They’re also 2-1 on the road and have shown their ability to beat Golden State. Just for kicks, let’s go take a look at these passed 6 games against the Warriors and reminisce in preparation for tonight’s game.
December 11, 2015: 2OT Warriors (24-0): 124 Celtics (13-10): 119
During the 2015-16 season the Celtics were as scrappy as we’ve ever seen them. Jared Sullinger and Amir Johnson logged big minutes for this iteration of the green and the Warriors were in their Pre-KD days. Kelly Olynyk had 28 off of the bench and it was probably the biggest game he had for the green aside from that Game 7 vs the Wizards. It was electric front to back and the Warriors lost the night after (to the bucks) as they were on a back to back and were gassed from the night before in Boston. This was peak Warriors and this Stephen Curry fellow, he was pretty good. Steph had 38 points and even though his shooting percentage wasn’t great (9-27), he hit the important ones and basically sunk the Celtics on his own.
April 1, 2016: Celtics (44-32): 109 Warriors (68-8): 106
Now this, this is the stuff. The Warriors were on a run of absolute terror through the NBA. 68-8 is a preposterous record and everything about that season for Golden State was incredible. Until, ya know, Draymond starting kicking people (below the belt, to be exact), got suspended, and led to the demise of the best team ever. The Warriors had won 54 straight home games and were chasing the 86′ Celtics for best record in a season at home (40-1).
We got everything in this game. Steph was doing a lot of Steph stuff (too much if you ask me), Evan Turner was leading the Celtics in crunch time, and Draymond Green started pass blocking for Steph on the last play of the game. Sully contributed a 20/12 performance and for once looked like the guy the Celtics had hoped he turned into. The Celtics grinded it out and repeatedly dodged possible daggers from Steph en route to a thrilling win.
This was also the game where Isaiah changed his shoes at half because they “didn’t have any buckets in them” and then came out and cooked in the second half. This is one of those games I’ll always remember because of just how dominant the Warriors were at this point in time. The Warriors were doing things the league hadn’t seen before and for the Celtics to waltz into Oracle and get a win like that, that’s big time stuff.
November 18, 2016: Warriors (10-2): 104 Celtics (6-6): 88
Do not let the final score of this one fool you, it was a drubbing after halftime and the Celtics were completely overmatched. They trailed by as much as 30 in the fourth quarter and were getting clowned by Zaza Pachulia. This was directly after I was convinced that KD was coming to Boston over the off-season and then he did the unthinkable. He must have liked the boos because he was on fire going 10-13 from the field en route to 23 points.
Without Al in the lineup the Celtics struggled and the Warriors bottled up IT (4-12). Besides a few first half Marcus Smart threes, there wasn’t much that went right for the Celtics. It just was one of those nights where the Warriors aren’t going to lose and you just have to stand there and take it. It isn’t pleasant and I’d like to just forget about this debacle all together.
March 8, 2017: Celtics (41-24): 99 Warriors (52-12): 86
Something about the Celtics and Oracle arena just fits as the green defeated the Warriors on the road for the second straight year. It obviously helps that KD didn’t suit up in this one but honestly who cares. It was a neck and neck game all the way to the fourth quarter and then Steph got a little too cocky for my liking as he started barking at Jaylen when he beat the third quarter buzzer. In my opinion, that’s where everything had to have gone wrong as they scored just 12 points in the fourth which led to a fat L. Isaiah had 25 and Kelly pitched in 17 off the bench on 7-9 shooting. The Celtics forced the Warriors into 17 turnovers as that basically is how they built their lead in the fourth.
November 16, 2017 Celtics (14-2): 92 Warriors (11-4): 88
13 game winning streak on the line, a new cast of characters, and the Warriors. What else do you need to set the stage for a dramatic game? This one got out of hand a couple of times but with the help of Jaylen Brown (22 points) the Celtics were able to always come back. I remember post game it came out that Jaylen Brown’s best friend Trevin Steede had passed away the night before and Jaylen was playing with a heavy heart.
This interview just shows how much pain he was in and just how out of sorts he was from the whole ordeal. He knew Trevin would have wanted him to play and his family egged him on to come out and play. He was phenomenal and looking back on the highlights it’s clear he was the most important guy on the court. The win was so impressive due to the sole fact that the Celtics hadn’t beaten the Warriors at full strength. It was win number 14 of a 16 game winning streak the Celtics went on after starting out 0-2 and it molded this team into who they were as a group.
Last thing, this game reminded me that we got MASKED Kyrie for a stretch last season. I was convinced with a mask Kyrie would be unstoppable (just feels like a Kyrie Irving thing to happen). Although he wasn’t unstoppable and at times kind of stunk with the mask on (he also hated it with a passion), it was still a strong look.
January 27, 2018: Warriors (40-10): 109 Celtics (35-15): 105
The last match-up between these two teams was last year in late January. After losing versus Boston the passed 2 seasons at Oracle Arena the Warriors got it together and defended home-court. Although the green took an L, this was one of those Kyrie performances we’ve grown to know and love. He had 37 points on 13-18 shooting and was 5-6 from deep. Some of the shots he was hitting were of such high difficulty and his craftiness was on display all night long.
For as good as Kyrie was, Steph was something else in this one as he had 49 of his own. He had 8 threes and was relentless on offense. There really isn’t much a team can do on defense when Curry is on this level and the Celtics were just another team to add to that list. He can change a game by himself and he fended off the Celtics best shots and helped in defending home-court for the Warriors.
Hopefully tomorrow I’ll be writing a game recap from a Celtic win. No matter what happens on the scoreboard expect the Garden to be rocking and expect a great game. They always play each other pretty tough and it’ll be fun to see them in what could be a Finals preview down the line in June.
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