NBA Finals: Will Stephen Curry finally win Finals MVP? Yahoo Sports' predictions

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The 2021-22 NBA Finals are a matchup of young versus old, youth versus experience and veteran versus first-year head coach.

The Golden State Warriors are trying for their fourth title in eight seasons, while the Boston Celtics haven’t been to the Finals since 2010.

Ahead of Game 1 (9 p.m. ET Thursday, ABC), Yahoo Sports’ NBA experts give their predictions.

Yahoo Sports' NBA experts are unanimously picking the Golden State Warriors to win the NBA Finals in seven games over the Boston Celtics and for Stephen Curry to win his first Finals MVP. (Graphic by Michael Wagstaffe/Yahoo Sports)
Yahoo Sports' NBA experts are unanimously picking the Golden State Warriors to win the NBA Finals in seven games over the Boston Celtics and for Stephen Curry to win his first Finals MVP. (Graphic by Michael Wagstaffe/Yahoo Sports)

Ben Rohrbach

I could see this series going any which way — Warriors or Celtics in a romp or either in a Game 7 — and I’m sure I’ll change my mind at least three times before the end of the series. It boils down to how well Golden State’s offense holds up against Boston’s defense. Those units are as dependable as anything we have seen in the NBA this season, and predicting which wins is a crapshoot. I give the Warriors the slightest of edges in seven games for three reasons: their six days of rest to Boston’s three between series, their 123 combined games of Finals experience to Boston’s zero and their home-court advantage, which includes a 9-0 record in these playoffs.

Prediction: Warriors in 7

Finals MVP: Stephen Curry

Vincent Goodwill

Do we really know how good these Celtics are? The best team since January that caught some fortunate playoff breaks in beating Milwaukee and Miami in too-close-for-comfort fashion. The same can be said about the Warriors in a way, with no Phoenix Suns waiting for them in the West finals. Stephen Curry will be hounded by the physicality and trust-falling of Marcus Smart, while Jayson Tatum has to contend with the boundless energy of Andrew Wiggins. Trusting Boston in close games is asking a lot, even if they feel like a more complete team. I’m going with the most desperate team, the one with home court.

Prediction: Warriors in 7

Finals MVP: Stephen Curry

Chris Haynes

Defensive Player of the Year Marcus Smart told me earlier this week that he will “just take the assignment like any other matchup” when guarding Stephen Curry. While that might be true, Curry is still a pretty tough matchup, especially considering Boston had to go through Brooklyn, Milwaukee and Miami for its first Finals appearance since 2010.

Prediction: Warriors in 7

Finals MVP: Stephen Curry

NBA Finals schedule

Game 1: Celtics at Warriors, Thursday, June 2, 9 p.m. ET (ABC)

Game 2: Celtics at Warriors, Sunday, June 5, 8 p.m. ET (ABC)

Game 3: Warriors at Celtics, Wednesday, June 8, 9 p.m. ET (ABC)

Game 4: Warriors at Celtics, Friday, June 10, 9 p.m. ET (ABC)

Game 5: Celtics at Warriors, Monday, June 13, 9 p.m. ET (ABC)*

Game 6: Warriors at Celtics, Thursday, June 16, 9 p.m. ET (ABC)*

Game 7: Celtics at Warriors, Sunday, June 19, 8 p.m. ET (ABC)*

* — if necessary

Betting odds for NBA Finals

Per BetMGM, the Golden State Warriors are favored to win the NBA Finals -160; Boston Celtics are listed at +130 odds.

Finals MVP odds: Stephen Curry (-110), Jayson Tatum (+170), Jaylen Brown (+1100), Klay Thompson (+1800), Draymond Green (+1800), Jordan Poole (+3500), Marcus Smart (+4000), Andrew Wiggins (+4000) and Al Horford (+10000).

More NBA Finals coverage from Yahoo Sports

Ben Rohrbach: 2022 NBA Finals preview: Golden State Warriors vs. Boston Celtics

Ben Rohrbach: Stephen Curry, Jayson Tatum and the legacies on the line in the 2022 NBA Finals

Krysten Peek: Path to the starting five: How the Celtics and Warriors built NBA Finals contenders

Chris Haynes: Marcus Smart knows he's not your favorite player, and he's not going to change his game

Vincent Goodwill: With Warriors already in luxury tax, will Jordan Poole's breakout season net him max extension?

Dan Wetzel: NBA Finals appeared light years away for Warriors, Celtics after exits of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving

Posted Up with Chris Haynes podcast, featuring Vincent Goodwill, previews the Finals:

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