The Celtics lost control of the series in a relatively disappointing game 3 that they lost by 7 points. Kyrie Irving led the way with 29 points, although he did struggle to just 8-22 from the field. Jayson Tatum looked much better in this one, going for 20 points, 11 boards, and 3 steals. Marcus Morris also continues to be a valuable piece of this starting lineup, going for 16 points and 8 boards of his own.
The Bucks looked like the dominant team they’ve been all season with an impressive road win in game 3. Giannis led the way as per usual, going for 32 points, 13 boards, and 8 assists. Khris Middleton was a more than capable sidekick, adding in 20 points and 5 assists of his own. The surprise contribution came from George Hill, who came out of nowhere to pour in 21 points on 9/12 shooting.
Prediction: 1st Half Over 108.5
The Refs have gotten a lot tighter with their whistles, making it much more difficult for Boston to guard Giannis. Naturally, this has led to much higher scoring Milwaukee outings, including an impressive 123 points in game 3. Boston also had a strong night offensively, shooting over 30 free throws and 40% from 3. I expect this trend to continue in game 4, especially in the first half where we are receiving a couple of points of line value.
The Rockets essentially kept their season alive with an impressive 5-point win in game 3. James Harden had his best game of the playoffs so far, going off for 41 points, 9 boards, and 6 assists. Eric Gordon had another very strong performance, making 7 3’s as he scored 30 points. Clint Capela was also a huge interior presence, registering another double-double, including 5 offensive rebounds.
Golden State Warriors
The Warriors were relatively poor in game 3, yet they still had their chances to win it late. Stephen Curry was particularly atrocious, going just 7/23 from the field in 45 minutes. Kevin Durant had another dominant offensive display, dropping 46 points to go along with his 6 assists. Draymond Green also continued his solid 2-way series, adding a triple-double that was headlined by 19 points.
Prediction: Warriors +2
I think the Warriors can take solace in the fact that they were still close despite a poor performance. The coaching staff has several adjustments they can make and we should see a much tighter rotation in game 4. While KD may not be as strong going forward, both Steph and Klay would struggle to play any worse. Golden State still has a huge talent edge when they go with their best 5 and I expect them to lean on them heavily again here. They want this series over in 5 and I think they make that a reality with an outright win as the road underdog.