They are not Draymond Green nor the other members of the Warriors (Steve Kerr and Klay Thompson the opposite was true: the atmosphere was particularly warm and hostile to TD Garden in Game 3. Exactly 4,378 days later, or just 12 years later, the Celtics were actually playing a game of Finals at home.
At the time, it was Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen or Rajon Rondo or Doc Rivers who defended the colors of Boston. Today, they have given way to Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart, Al Horford and Ime Udoka. Whether it was June 13, 2010 or June 8, 2022, the end result was the same: victory of the C’s in front of their fans, not in the face of historic Lakers rivals, but in the face of the impressive Warriors dynasty.
And the Massachusetts public did not miss his reunion with the Finals, playing his role of luxury “sixth man”, from the warm-up. A real pleasure for Jayson Tatum and his teammates, boosted by this atmosphere and who evolved among others under the eyes of Paul Pierce, Bill Walton but also Antoine Walker.
« During those playoffs, we weren’t good enough at home and we feel really bad about that because our fans bring us so much energy. », regretted at first the All-Star winger. « Even before the game started, you could feel all the energy coming out of the room. [Les fans] were excited, it was great. It’s like we haven’t played here in a long time. I’m so glad we won in front of this crowd. They’ve been great since the start of these playoffs and the season. From the beginning of my career, even. It was great to get a win for them and we will need them again on Friday. »
Be as effective at home as you are outside
Currently leading (2-1) in this series against Golden State, the Boston players have regained the advantage of the field from Game 1 and they obviously hope not to let it go to the end. They, who are currently much more comfortable outside (8-3) than at home (6-4) in these playoffs, despite all the support of their fans.
« Playing at home is clearly an advantage, as there is a little more energy in the room and things can go your way quickly. But we lost a lot of home games in those playoffs, and in the end you just have to get on the field and play. It doesn’t matter if you’re in Boston, San Francisco or Alaska », warned on his part Jaylen Brown, regarding the relative difficulties of her team at TD Garden.
The final word is for Marcus Smart, who has been in Massachusetts since 2014 and has felt a difference in mood compared to what he has experienced in recent seasons.
« It was really different, it really added oil to the engine, it gives goosebumps just to talk about », explained the Defender of the Year 2022, before talking about his expectations for the future. « It took 12 years for this franchise and this organization to get back to the Finals and be in that position. When we look up at the sky and see all these banners, all these removed jerseys, it is something that gives us the motivation to become successors. »