Celtics Win First Title Since 2008; Brown Named MVP

The Celtics won their record-breaking 18th NBA championship and first since 2008 on Monday night, defeating the Mavericks in Game 5, 106-88. Boston now has one more title than the Lakers.

Jayson Tatum racked up 31 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds in Game 5, while Jaylen Brown supplied 21 points, eight rebounds and six assists.

Brown was named the Finals’ Most Valuable Player, Brian Robb of MassLive.com tweets. He received seven of 11 possible votes from media members, with Tatum getting the other four (Twitter link).

Dallas extended the series with a lopsided victory in Game 4 but had no answers for the deeper Celtics when the series shifted back to Boston. The Celtics opened up a 67-46 halftime lead and cruised to the finish line.

Boston, which entered the playoffs as the top seed, is well-positioned to shoot for back-to-back titles. All of its key players — Tatum, Brown, Kristaps Porzingis, Jrue Holiday, Derrick White, Al Horford and Payton Pritchard — are signed through at least next season. The Celtics hold a $2.1MM option on Sam Hauser‘s contract, which they will likely exercise.

Tatum is signed through the next two seasons, though he holds a $37.1MM player option for the 2025/26 season. Tatum is eligible for a five-year super-max extension worth a projected $315MM next month.

The Mavericks also have most of their rotation players signed through at least next season, with Derrick Jones Jr. the only exception — he’ll be an unrestricted free agent this summer. Dallas could look to make at least one significant upgrade via the trade market to provide another scoring option for Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving.

With the Finals decided, the 2024 NBA offseason is officially underway. For the first time, teams will be permitted to negotiate contracts with their own free agents one day after the Finals. Players who won’t be free agents this offseason but who will become eligible to sign contract extensions on July 6 will also be permitted to negotiate with their current teams as of Tuesday.

Thus, it wouldn’t be surprising if some agreements are reported this week. Free agent contracts still can’t be officially finalized until after the July moratorium lifts on July 6.

The draft will be held on June 26-27 with free agency beginning on June 30 at 6 p.m. Eastern time.

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