The Dallas Mavericks avoided a sweep with a dominant Game 4 win. Can they extend it again or will the Boston Celtics raise banner no. 18?

Catch the game tomorrow, June 18, 2024 at 8:30 AM, Manila time

HOME: Dallas Mavericks (1-3)

Projected Starting Five:

  • Luka Doncic
  • Kyrie Irving
  • Derrick Jones Jr.
  • P.J. Washington
  • Daniel Gafford

Though it ended in a loss, the Mavericks were able to build off from their strong 4th quarter run in Game 3 and carry it towards Game 4, which allowed them to blast the Celtics from the get-go. They raced into an easy 122-84 victory, and even led by as much as 48 points. 

It’s now an interesting wait as every win can generate a huge amount of momentum. The good thing is Luka Doncic was in good spirits in the recent contest – smiling, putting effort on defense, not complaining to the refs, and just playing his game. All those played a role in energizing the entire group, so they still cruised even though his numbers weren’t mind-blowing (29 pts, 5 rebs, 5 ast, 3 stls) and he missed all of his eight attempts from three.

The same goes with Kyrie Irving, who was good again (21 pts, 6 asst), more relaxed, and not too eager to show up his former team. Let’s see if he can bounce back from his two duds in Boston in games 1 and 2.

As always, the hope for Dallas is for the supporting cast to adequately aid the two stars, so the onus is on PJ Washington, Daniel Gafford, Josh Green, and Derrick Jones Jr. Maybe Tim Hardaway Jr. can contribute again too? He was scoreless all series and suddenly had 15 points on five threes in Game 4.


HOME: Boston Celtics (3-0)

Projected Starting Five:

  • Jrue Holiday
  • Derrick White
  • Jaylen Brown
  • Jayson Tatum
  • Kristaps Porzingis (questionable) / Al Horford

The Celtics showed minimal effort in Game 4 after the first few minutes of the first quarter, as evident in scoring a season-low 84 points on 36.3% shooting, which, on the other hand, was their second-lowest clip. No one also scored more than 15. It’s either they gave the game away because they want to clinch the title in Boston or they just quit after getting blitzed.

As the number one team all year, though, the Celtics do deserve some leeway. They still look good for Game 5, and can very well return the favor, and that’s even with Kristaps Porzingis being questionable yet again (16.0 PPG, 2.5 BPG, 60 FG% in the series). Knowing how competitive these guys are, expect him to be out there if the game is tight.

We should also see The Jays rise up to try and grab that brass ring for the Celtics. Jaylen Brown is at 20.8 / 4.8 / 4.8 / 1.5 on 49.2% shooting in the series, and considered the leading candidate for FMVP, with Tatum right behind him with 20.0 / 7.8 / 6.3, albeit a horrendous 36.5% clip, and would probably need a monster game to steal it.

Porzingis, Jrue Holiday, and Derrick White will continue playing their roles as elite sub pieces, so much so that Holiday also has a chance at FMVP should he drop good numbers in the clincher.


Spread: Celtics (-7)

Over/Under: Over (209.5)