NBA Finals X-Factors For The Nuggets And Heat

NBA Finals X-Factors For The Nuggets And Heat

These factors will likely decide the entire series

By Kate Constable – May 31, 2023, 12:04am

The Heat are certainly going to have their work cut out for them on the defensive end. The Nuggets have multiple weapons at different positions that can go nuclear at any time. However, that was also the case for the Bucks, Knicks and Celtics, and Miami did a great job of slowing them down.

One of the biggest factors in doing so was its zone defense. In the ECF, Boston was a team that lived and died by the three. During the regular season, it ranked second in three-pointers made and sixth in three-point percentage. Against Miami's zone, however, the Celtics struggled to shoot, which ultimately cost them a few games. In Monday's Game 7, the Heat only gave up 19 points to the Celtics in the 34 zone possessions they played, according to Synergy. That equated to just 0.56 points per possession for Boston. Over the course of the entire series, the Celtics averaged just 0.76 points per possession against Miami's zone, compared to 1.05 poi nts when the Heat played in man-to-man.
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