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    Kristaps Porzingis

    Celtics Center Kristaps Porzingis Eyes Return for NBA Finals

    June 3, 2024

    As the Boston Celtics prepare for their NBA Finals matchup against the Dallas Mavericks, one of the pressing questions is whether center Kristaps Porzingis will be ready to take the court. Porzingis, who sustained a strained left calf in Game 4 of the first-round playoff series against the Miami Heat on April 29, has not played since. However, recent developments indicate a potential return soon.

    Boston’s impressive postseason run, including a 4-1 series win over both the Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers, followed by a 4-0 sweep of the Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Conference finals, has provided Porzingis with valuable recovery time. Despite his absence, the Celtics have maintained a strong 9-1 record, showcasing their depth and resilience.

    Coach Joe Mazzulla has remained cautious about predicting Porzingis’ return, emphasizing the importance of his presence in the lineup. “When KP is at his best, he’s been tremendous for us and we expect that from him and we know he’ll give that to us,” Mazzulla stated.

    Porzingis himself hinted at a return on social media, posting, “I’ll be back in the lineup very soon. See you in the finals.” His activity on the court has also increased, with him participating in extended 3-point shooting drills and light 5-on-5 play, marking his most extensive workout since the injury.

    When healthy, Porzingis has been a significant contributor for the Celtics, averaging 20.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 1.9 blocks per game during the regular season. His presence as both a scorer and a rim protector was instrumental before his injury, with playoff averages of 14.0 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks.

    Porzingis’ absence due to various injuries throughout the season, including issues with his left calf, right knee, right hamstring, left ankle, and back, saw the Celtics adapt and excel, going 21-4 in the 25 games he missed. This adaptability has been crucial in their postseason success.

    Celtics guard Derrick White, an NBA All-Defensive third team honoree, highlighted Porzingis’ defensive impact. “He does a great job of just making things difficult,” White said. “It’s always nice to know that he’s back there, whether he blocks or he doesn’t block. He makes them think about it.”

    Teammate Jrue Holiday echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the team’s ability to adjust based on regular-season experiences without Porzingis. “We kind of went through all scenarios before of what could happen or what would happen or whatever. And it kind of shows,” Holiday noted.

    The Celtics are hopeful that Porzingis can be reintegrated smoothly into the lineup for the Finals, which tip off on Thursday. “KP is one of the best scorers. He’s one of our best rim protectors,” Holiday added. “And I feel like we’re all mature enough to get back in the groove or have him fit right back in whenever he comes back. And we do want KP back. We can’t wait for him to be back and be a part of this on the court.”

    With Porzingis’ potential return, the Celtics are poised to strengthen their squad further as they face the Mavericks. His recovery progress and the team’s adaptability will be crucial factors as Boston aims to leverage their depth and defensive prowess in their pursuit of the championship. The signs are promising, but the final decision on Porzingis’ availability will likely come down to the wire.

    About the Author


    Written by DafaNews

    DafaNews brings you the most highlighted news in the world of Sports. It serves you up-to-date matches, scores, live streams, fantasy games and quizzes. Our news covers prestigious leagues and events – Premier League, Champions League, World Cup and many more.

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