The Boston Celtics lost Game 4 of the NBA Finals 107-97, as the Golden State Warriors bounced back after a Game 3 defeat. Now, the series will be tied at two apiece heading back to The Bay, and the Warriors hold homecourt advantage once again.
Warriors star point guard Stephen Curry was dominant once again. He’s led every game of the series in scoring, and it was no different on Friday night. Curry dropped 43 points, 10 rebounds, and four assists, torching the Celtics all night long.
After the game, Celtics point guard Marcus Smart spoke about what it was like to defend Curry. When asked about whether or not they pressed up on him enough, Smart pushed back on the notion.
“We were there. He’s a great player; he made shots. He made a lot of the shots where we were contesting from behind. We had somebody there and he was just making them. That’s what he does. We obviously have to do a better job of limiting that. We got to make it even more tough for him. It is what it is. We get another chance to do it again on Monday,” Smart explained.
In addition, Smart was asked about Curry’s ability to get open in transition, and what the Celtics can do to continuously put pressure on him.
Smart Says Celtics Need to ‘Be Aware’ of Curry
The Celtics point guard was asked about Curry’s fourth-quarter transition opportunities and what Boston needs to do better in regard to limiting him. Smart said that it’s all about being aware of his location.
“I think you just said it, you got to be aware, especially at the end,” Smart said. “That’s the one guy you can’t allow to beat you. Like I said, obviously he made a lot of tough shots tonight on us. When you get a guy like that, some rhythm early on, those shots, the basketball hoops starts to look a little bit bigger for him. We just got to make it a conscious effort to find him and Klay and their shooters, especially in transition.”
Curry had 10 points and four rebounds in the fourth quarter on 2-of-4 shooting from the field and 1-of-1 shooting from three-point range.
Head coach Ime Udoka commented on how the Celtics guarded Curry, too, but he was less worried about his makes and more worried about his attempts.
Udoka Says Curry Hit ‘Some Crazy Shots’
When Udoka was asked about Curry sometimes “getting loose,” he noted that he’s less concerned about Curry’s makes, and more concerned about the number of shots the Celtics are letting him get off in the first place.
“Yeah, at times we’re obviously focused on him, keeping others in check. But some of those were some crazy shots that were highly contested that he made. You look at the overall numbers, the attempts, getting those off, it is the number we don’t like, the 14 attempts in general,” Udoka explained. “He came out bombing early, had nine in the first half. Some of the threes he hit were highly contested and you can’t do anything about those. When we did switch, it kind of got some cross matches and guys on the rim. Went after him a little bit later. They made some plays.”
Boston will have another shot at slowing down Curry in Game 5, which is set to tip off at 9:00 p.m. Eastern time on Monday, June 13, in San Francisco.