The NBA Finals is now a three-game series. With the Game 5 winner within a title win, Monday night’s urgency will be at an all-time high at the Golden State. Luckily, injuries haven’t played a major role in this series so far; However, each side has some hobbling players. For the Warriors it was Steph Curry’s foot that was a problem after Game 3 and for the Celtics it was Robert Williams who was struggling with an injury.
When asked about his big man’s status, Boston head coach Ime Udoka said the team is optimistic he can play 5 in this crucial game. While the box score doesn’t always reflect his influence, Williams is one of the league’s top deterrents in the suit. Williams frequently changed or blocked layup attempts while punishing Golden State on the glass and was one of the most influential players in the Finals.
In four games, the Celtics have surpassed the Warriors by 20 points when Williams was on the ground and were surpassed by 21 points when he was off the ground. Both her offensive and defensive efficiency drop significantly when Williams is seated, making his availability a key element for the remainder of this series. Because of that, it’s certainly encouraging for Boston that their big man seems ready for Game 5.
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