The NBA Finals are upon us.
The Golden State Warriors will take on the Boston Celtics with this year’s crown on the line, beginning Thursday in San Francisco.
Here are the numbers that define the NBA Finals.
This will be the 76th NBA Finals in league history. The Eastern champions have won 40 titles, while the Western champions have won 35 titles.
This will be the fifth time the Warriors and the Celtics face each other in a playoff series. The first three occurred when the Warriors played in Philadelphia before the franchise relocated to the Bay Area in 1962. The Celtics have won all four previous matchups and hold a 16-7 record (.700) head-to-head.
- 1964 NBA Finals: Celtics defeat Warriors, 4-1
- 1962 East Division finals: Celtics defeat Warriors, 4-3
- 1960 East Division finals: Celtics defeat Warriors, 4-2
- 1958 East Division finals: Celtics defeat Warriors, 4-1
The NBA Finals will be a matchup of the two best regular-season defenses in the NBA. The Celtics’ 106.2 defensive rating was the best in the NBA in the regular reason, and the Warriors’ 105.1 defensive rating was second. This is the first NBA Finals to feature the top two teams in the regular season when it comes to defensive efficiency since 1996, when the Chicago Bulls defeated the Seattle SuperSonics.
This will be the third time that the West’s No. 3 seed and the East’s No. 2 seed face each other in the NBA Finals. Both times the West won. This will also be the seventh time in NBA Finals history that a 2-seed and 3-seed meet, with the 3-seed winning each of the last four series.
The Celtics (22) and the Warriors (12) have two of the three-most NBA Finals appearances among franchises in NBA history, trailing only the Los Angeles Lakers (32).
The Warriors have a combined 123 games of NBA Finals experience on their roster, while the Celtics have zero games of NBA Finals experience on their roster. This is just the third NBA Finals in league history in which one team has had 100-plus games of experience while the other team has zero, and the first time since 1997 (Bulls 134, Utah Jazz 0).
The Warriors and the Celtics split the season series, with each team winning on the opponent’s home court.
GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS
12: The Warriors are making their 12th NBA Finals appearance; They are 6-5 in their previous 11 appearances.
6: Only the Lakers have more NBA Finals appearances since 2000 (eight) than the Warriors have since 2015 (six).
1: In 2019-20, the Warriors finished with the worst record in the NBA. They are the first team to go from the worst record in the NBA to an NBA Finals appearance within a three-season span since the Warriors from 1964-67.
6: The Warriors are the first franchise to reach the NBA Finals six times in an eight-season span since the Jordan-Pippen Bulls from 1991-98.
9-0: The Warriors’ record at home this postseason. They are the only team that has not lost at home this postseason.
114.5: The Warriors are scoring 114.5 points per game this postseason, the highest average of any team.
.736: Warriors coach Steve Kerr now has an 89-32 (.736) coaching record in the postseason. His 89 career playoff wins as a head coach are ninth-most in NBA history. He is the all-time winningest playoff coach by percentage in NBA history.
6: Kerr’s six NBA Finals appearances are now tied for fourth-most by a head coach in NBA history, tied for the most among active coaches with San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.
4: Kerr is seeking to become just the fourth NBA coach to win four NBA titles in his first eight years coaching in the NBA. Phil Jackson (five), Pat Riley (four) and John Kundla (four) are the other three.
3: The Warriors are the first 3-seed from the West to reach the NBA Finals since the 2011 Dallas Mavericks.
116.1: The Warriors have the NBA’s best offensive rating this postseason.
37.8: The Warriors lead the playoffs in bench points per game.
66.9: The Warriors lead the NBA this playoff in assist percentage. They also lead the NBA in assists per game at 28.3.
4-3: The Warriors are the only team to have a winning record this postseason when trailing after the third quarter. The Warriors are undefeated when leading after the first quarter (6-0), at halftime (8-0) and after the third quarter (8-0).
23, 24, 25: Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson are the 23rd, 24th and 25th players to make at least six NBA Finals appearances in their careers.
7: Andre Iguodala has reached the NBA Finals for the seventh time in the last eight seasons (2015-19 with the Warriors and 2020 with the Miami Heat). He is the 18th player in NBA history to make seven or more NBA Finals appearances.
1, 2: Curry is first in made 3-pointers in these playoffs (60), and Thompson is tied for second with Jayson Tatum (57).
22: The Celtics are making their 22nd NBA Finals appearance. They are 17-4 in their previous 21 NBA Finals appearances
7: The Celtics lost in seven games to the Lakers in their last NBA Finals appearance in 2010.
18: The Celtics are seeking their 18th NBA championship title. If they win, they would pass the Lakers (17) for the most in NBA history.
1: Boston is making its first NBA Finals appearance in 12 years despite being in the Eastern Conference finals in four of the last six seasons.
3: On the Celtics’ path to the NBA Finals, they have beaten each of the last three teams that ended Boston’s season in the last three playoffs (2021 Brooklyn Nets, 2020 Heat, 2019 Milwaukee Bucks).
.667: Boston coach Ime Udoka now has a 12-6 (.667) coaching record in the postseason. By advancing to the Finals, Udoka is the first head coach to lead his team to the NBA Finals in his first year since Nick Nurse (2018-19 Toronto Raptors) and just the fifth coach overall.
6.1: Boston has the best point differential per game in the NBA playoffs.
6.7: The Celtics have the largest point differential per game on the road in the playoffs. The next closest team was the Bucks at just 3.0.
23-7: In its last 30 road games, Boston is 23-7 with a +12.1 scoring margin. The next closest road scoring margin over that period belongs to the Charlotte Hornets and the Heat, both tied at 4.4.
7.4: When combining the regular season and playoffs, the Celtics have the fourth-best road scoring margin in NBA history behind the 1972 Lakers (9.9), 2017 Warriors (7.7) and 1971 Bucks (7.6).
90: The Celtics have held an opponent to fewer than 90 points four times this postseason, the most in the NBA.
242: Boston has made 242 3-pointers this postseason, the most of any Eastern Conference team.
13-1: The Celtics are 13-1 in NBA Finals series when winning Game 1. They are 4-3 when they do not win Game 1.
141: Al Horford makes his first NBA Finals appearance, breaking his current active record of 141 playoff games without an NBA Finals appearance. With Horford’s appearance, Paul Millsap will have the longest active streak (130 playoff games).
6-0: The Celtics’ record this postseason when Grant Williams scores more than 10 points.
1,500: Tatum became the fifth player in NBA history to score 1,500-plus playoff points before his 25th birthday, joining Kobe Bryant (2,155 points), LeBron James (1,761), Tony Parker (1,547) and Kevin Durant (1,546).
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