4. Dallas Mavericks at Boston Celtics, March 1
The only inter-conference matchup on this list, the Mavs fly to Boston to take on the new-look Celtics on the first day of March.
A few noteworthy storylines outline this matchup between Dallas and Boston. First, new Maverick Grant Williams returns to Boston, where he began his career. Second, former Maverick and new Celtic Kristaps Porzingis gets another shot to take on his old squad.
Last but not least, another former Celtic will be suiting for Dallas. Kyrie Irving played for Boston from 2017 to 2019. However, this isn't his first rodeo. He's played the Celtics 24 times in his NBA career.
The most important storyline in this game may be a battle between two top-seeded teams in each conference. The Celtics have advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals or further in each of the past two seasons, and three more times in the past eight seasons.
The Mavs and Celtics each battled different opponents in the 2022 Conference Finals. Both teams shared a common enemy in Golden State. The Warriors knocked off the Mavs in five games and defeated the Celtics in six to win their seventh title, but more on them later.
This matchup will be a tough test for the Mavericks. Can Dallas hang with an upper-echelon squad in time for the playoffs? Or will the Mavs revert back to their ways of this previous season and fizzle out before it's all said and done?