Celtics Confident in Reaching NBA Finals Despite Porzingis Injury

The Boston Celtics have a 3-1 series lead against the Cleveland Cavaliers and are now only one victory away from guaranteeing their spot in the Eastern Conference Finals.

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This is despite the fact that Kristaps Porzingis, one of their NBA All-Stars, sustained a non-contact calf injury in the 2023–24 playoffs’ opening round and hasn’t played since.

However, league insider Mark Medina continues to believe that the Celtics will represent the Eastern Conference in the NBA Finals and have a “relatively smooth path.”

Seeking to Conclude the SeriesTo qualify for the ECF, one need only win once in three attempts.

With a roster that includes a wealth of superstar talent, such as Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, some seasoned All-Stars in Porzingis and Jrue Holiday, as well as some rising stars like Derrick White, who has thrived in his starting role, especially in the postseason, it is not surprising that the Celtics are poised to make it to the Eastern Conference Finals for a third straight season.

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Boston was one of the heavy favorites to win the coveted Larry O’Brien trophy going into the 2023–24 regular season. They proved it throughout the year, finishing with a 64–18 record, the top overall seed in the Association, and the distinction of being the only team to lose fewer than 20 games.

They were the only NBA club with a double-digit net efficiency as they concluded the regular season as the most efficient team, outscoring their opponents by 11.7 points per 100 possessions.

Thus, it came as no surprise when they defeated the Miami Heat without Jimmy Butler in five games during the playoffs’ first round, and many anticipated a similar performance during their semifinal matchup with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

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Though the Latvian forward Porzingis’ injury hasn’t completely kept him out of the playoffs, there were concerns raised about whether it would impede their chances of winning the NBA championship. Nevertheless, they currently lead the Cavaliers 3-1 in the series, and the Cavs have their own set of injury concerns.

With Jarrett Allen missing all of this series due to a right rib contusion and Cavaliers star Donovan Mitchell questionable for game five following his calf injury in game four, the Celtics are now just one victory away from making it to the Eastern Conference Finals.

The Celtics’ “relatively smooth path” to the NBA Finals continues.Following Porzingis’s absence, Medina asserts that the Celtics will still be able to win the Finals with relative ease as long as his injury isn’t thought to be playoff-ending.

The writer is apprehensive about which Western Conference clubs they will have the upper hand over, since they feel they have an advantage over all teams save the defending champion Denver Nuggets.

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Since two years ago, Porzingis has experimented with a variety of training methods, including strength training and stretching, to optimize weight loss and reduce stress on his hips and joints for improved health.

In actuality, though, there’s a reason he’s had a history of injuries. Having said that, the Celtics will still make it to the Finals and their journey will likely be very easy, providing it doesn’t conclude in a play-off.

Regarding who they play in the Western Conference and where they will have the advantage, I am still unsure. My pick is still the Denver Nuggets, but my pick will go to Boston if they play the Oklahoma City Thunder or Minnesota Timberwolves.

Celtics might need to fight their way through a “war of attrition.”The only worry Medina has is if Porzingis’ injury short-term wears down his teammates too soon in terms of general health and fatigue, which could cause some issues later on, especially since they theoretically play stronger teams the further into the playoffs they go.

“In the near run, this may raise concerns about the attrition battle alone and how much more difficult their path to the NBA Finals may become. I still believe they make it to the NBA Finals, but it wouldn’t be as easy. Besides, once you reach the championship, it all comes down to who’s the healthiest and most productive.”