Kyrie Irving and the Celtics are on an absolute tear right now. Since losing their first two games of the season—and losing their big-name free agency acquisition Gordon Hayward to a devastating leg injury—Boston has reeled off 14 wins in a row, including a come-from-behind win over the Warriors on Thursday night. They have been playing well on both ends of the court, despite short-term injuries to Irving and Al Horford, and they have looked like the title contender people thought they could be heading into this season.
But will they actually be able to beat LeBron James and the Cavaliers in the playoffs this season to advance to the NBA Finals? That obviously remains to be seen. But after Golden State went down to Boston on Thursday, Steph Curry made a prediction of sorts when he was asked if he thought his team might end up playing against the Celtics, not the Cavaliers, in the NBA Finals this year after three consecutive Finals matchups against Cleveland. And he said it’s looking "very likely" that the road to an NBA championship could come through Boston rather than Cleveland.
"Very, very likely, right?" Curry said. "They’re playing the best right now in the East. Obviously, until they beat Cleveland, who has done it three years in a row, we’ll see. I hear the weather’s great [in Boston] in June, so we’ll see."
Before anyone in Boston gets too excited about what Curry said, it’s important to remember that there’s still a ton of basketball to be played between now and June. As Celtics fans have already learned on several occasions this season, injuries happen, and those injuries could play a role in how far Boston is able to advance in the postseason. There are also inevitably going to be trades that take place between now and February that could impact the outcome of the Eastern Conference Playoffs and the NBA Playoffs as a whole.
But at least for now, the idea of a Warriors/Celtics matchup in the Finals doesn’t seem all that crazy, given how well both teams have played so far this season. And if Thursday night was any indication, it could end up being one hell of a series if those two teams face off in the Finals at the end of it all.