The NBA Finals are only a few days away, and fans are in for a good one. The Golden State Warriors are going for their fourth championship since 2015, and the Boston Celtics are looking to win their first championship since 2008. It would also be their 18th championship in franchise history.
The Warriors have their work cut out for them with this young Celtics team, but at the same time, the Warriors’ experience could give them the advantage. This will be an exciting series that could come down to the performance of one player. The Finals Most Valuable Player (MVP) award is given to the player that impacted the series the most. They helped their team get over the hump with outstanding performances in one or more games. Last year’s Finals MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo, was excellent in the series and had little to no competition in the Finals MVP race. This year, the race could be a bit tighter. Here are four players that could win the Finals MVP.
1.) Steph Curry
Steph Curry is no stranger to winning awards. He is a 3-time champion, a two-time (regular reason) MVP, and most recently, he won the NBA’s new Magic Johnson Western Conference Finals MVP award. But he has never won the Finals MVP. This year would be an ideal opportunity for Curry to win the Finals MVP, and as the Warriors star player, he is bound to have great performances. Curry averaged 23.8 points, 7.4 assists and 6.6 rebounds while shooting nearly 44 percent from 3-point range in the Western Conference finals. And there is a good chance he will have a similar (if not better) performance in this series. But he has competition.
2.) Jayson Tatum
Jayson Tatum is one of the league’s brightest stars. The 24-year-old forward already has his share of playoff experience. The Celtics made the playoffs in his rookie season, and they have been in the playoffs ever since. Tatum has had an impressive 2022 playoffs, as he and the Celtics swept the Brooklyn Nets in the first round. Tatum also led the Celtics past contenders such as the Milwaukee Bucks and the Miami Heat.
Tatum averaged 25 points, 8.3 rebounds and 5.6 assists while shooting nearly 48 percent from the field. He was the recipient of the inaugural Larry Bird Eastern Conference Finals MVP, and after such a great playoff run, he probably won’t slow down.
3.) Klay Thompson
Klay Thompson is back! After missing time in the past few seasons, Thompson is back on the floor and remains a valuable piece of the Warriors. Like Curry, Thompson is a three-time champion and has his share of accolades, but Finals MVP is not one of them. This could be his year.
Thompson averaged 18.6 points, 3.8 rebounds and 3.2 assists. As a player that is effective on both offense and defense, Thomspn could have the task of guarding Tatum. And if he does that well, and knocks down shots for the Warriors, he could win MVP.
4.) Jaylen Brown
Jaylen Brown is a significant player on this Celtics team. The Celtics drafted Brown in 2016 (a year before Tatum) and while Brown did not have a great rookie season, he eventually became their second (or sometimes first) option. Basically, if Tatum is the Curry or star player on his team, Brown is the Thompson that helps take the pressure off him. And if Brown’s shots aren’t falling, he is a solid defender that can guard a team’s best player. Brown might be a longshot at the Finals MVP but he is still a player to keep in mind.
The Finals are going to be special, and if any of these four players play well, the series is up for grabs.