Finally, Jason Tatum, Jalen Brown and Marcus Smart are in the NBA Finals!

Many times they failed. All too often, the NBA Finals stride turned out to be too high. But that’s it, they were finally able to validate their ticket to play the biggest series of the season. Jason Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart are now East Champions after winning Game 7 in Miami tonight, a victory that proves the maturity of the Boston trio.

There was a time when many Hexperts wondered if Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown were supposed to be together. There was a time when Marcus Smart was in transfer rumors. There was a time when the latter publicly criticized front defenders for their tendency not to pass the ball. It feels like a long time ago today, but that was just a few months ago, when the Celtics were light years away from looking like the current team that had just settled their place to compete in the NBA Finals. And as a symbol, it was this trio that carried Boston to victory last night on the Heat floor: 26 points – 10 rebounds – 6 assists for series MVP Jason Tatum, 24 points – 6 rebounds – 6 assists for Mr. Brown, 24 points – 9 rebounds – 5 assists for Marcus SMART. According to the Twitter account NBA history, this is only the second line in Big League history to complete Game 7 with a 20-5-5 stat line each (after Magic Johnson, James Worthy, and Byron Scott of the Lakers in 1988). JT proved once again last night that he is now more than a goalscorer in isolation and that he has become an over-complete player as well as a real threat in the play industry. Alongside him, in the role of No. 2, Brown came to bring his qualities as a goalscorer by trying to limit errors as much as possible, not forgetting to contribute to other aspects of the game. As for Marcus, he has shown once again, that he is far more than his team’s Defender of the Year, equaling his scoring record in the 2022 playoffs and finishing both as the third-scorer and best passer in Boston in this series. In short, a great way to crown their greatest success together, they have shared many ups and downs in recent years.

Brown and Smart were in their fourth conference final this year against Miami. Jason Tatum, who reached the NBA in 2017, was playing for the third time. Every time so far, he’s ended up being eliminated at the gates of the NBA Finals. 2017 first, when the Cavaliers crushed LeBron James and Kyrie Irving Boston 4-1. L’année suivante ensuite, quand Boston – porté notamment par un Brown en pleine progression et un Tatum pas loin d’être exception dans son costume de rookie – s’était incliné de justesse contre le King de Cleveland lors d’un Game 7 à the home. Great story due to the absences of juniors Kerry and Gordon Hayward, but the defeat in Game 7 inevitably left a bad taste in the mouth, especially for Jaylen and Marcus who missed the action (5/18 on the shot for JB, 1/10 for Marcus). And then clearly, we haven’t forgotten that streak between Boston and Miami (already) in the Orlando bubble, which the opportunistic Heat won 4-2 in the face of fouls by the Celtics. In this particular bubble, the chairs in the locker room flew after defeating Game 2, until Marcus Smart and Jaylene Brown had to be separated by their teammates to keep it from deteriorating further.

You’ve noticed it yourself, there is experience with these Celtics and in particular with this trio. And again, we can quote other episodes but that is not the topic at the time of these lines. The point is, the Greens of Tatum – Brown – Smart have just taken a big step to finally give themselves a taste of the NBA Finals., all this after a season in which he only had a 50% win last year and an average first part of the campaign in 2021-22. By winning the Eastern Conference this year, the trio have proven that they can work together to take the Celtics to a place they have not set foot since 2010. Also in the very positive development of the Celtics on the other side of the field, the three can now enjoy their achievement, even if it’s from Clearly, there are still four successes to complete the cycle.

“We’ve been through a lot. Blood is sweat and tears. Every year, when we’re in this situation, we’ve had to look in the mirror, and it hurts. We didn’t want it to happen again. What we’ve had to go through in recent years, adversities Which we faced early in the season, this allowed us to do what we had to do in this 7 game. […] The franchise documented us and allowed us to correct our mistakes. We’ve grown up and it’s been good for us in the long run. »

– Marcus Smart, at a post-match press conference

Last December, almost no one believed Boston could win the Eastern Conference. We wondered if the Tatum-Brown-smart trio was about to explode. But here they are today, the 2022 NBA Finals hat proudly pinned to their heads with bigger dreams than ever.

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