It hasn’t been long since the NBA Finals concluded, and Grant Williams seems to have not gotten over it yet. He took a shot at their opponents and claimed the Boston Celtics were the better team.
The Warriors were the more disciplined team
The Golden State Warriors defeated the Boston Celtics, 4-2 in the 2022 NBA Finals. For Williams to claim that the Warriors only won because they were more disciplined was a bit of a stretch. Yes, Golden State displayed more poise because of years of experience and the team’s talent.
“When I’ve reflected and looked back to those games, I still would say confidently -- confidently -- to this day they weren’t the better team. I would say they were the more disciplined team. I would say that without a doubt.”
The 23-year-old pinpointed specific instances where the Celtics were in control, and then suddenly, the momentum had shifted in favor of Golden State. When things didn’t go according to their plan, they started to lose composure. So the Warriors have been there, done that long enough to capitalize on these small mistakes. But being calm and sticking to the plan in high-stakes moments is a part of being the better team. In Willams' words, being disciplined means being better.
Boston shot themselves in the foot
The Celtics recorded 16.8 turnovers per game and struggled offensively in the Finals. Jayson Tatum set the record for having the most turnovers in the postseason with 95. If the leader is struggling, the rest of the team tends to struggle as well. Now that the Celtics experienced what it's like playing under the brightest lights, expectations for them will be much greater next year.
In trying to plug a hole in Boston’s system, they acquired Malcolm Brogdon to help direct the point and added veteran Danilo Gallinari to help space the floor. Are these enough to propel the team to the next level? It depends. Their maturity could spell the difference between a playoff exit and another Finals appearance.
The Warriors gave them a masterclass, but Golden State learned it through experience. Championship poise cannot be taught overnight. Instead, the Celtics had to learn the value of having the discipline to take a closer look at the small things - sticking to plays, taking care of the ball, and being overconfident - because sometimes, they spell the difference between winning and losing.
In the NBA, having more talent does not guarantee a win. It’s the players sticking to the system and having the mental toughness to overcome anything thrown their way. Next year, we'll see if the Celtics learned their lesson. There will be no excuses left for them.