Celtics Jayson Tatum Gets Candid on Potential New Role

Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics

Getty Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics

We’re two games into the NBA pre-season and the Boston Celtics are deep into their experimenting phase.

In both of their first two games, Joe Mazzulla has tried out a small-ball lineup that has seen Jayson Tatum occupy the center position, while still being tasked with bringing the ball up the court and initiating the offense.

Speaking to the media following the Celtics’ 125-119 overtime loss to the Toronto Raptors, Tatum discussed potentially seeing some additional time at the five when the Celtics go small this season – or at least, until Robert Williams returns from injury.

Jayson Tatum: "I'm just happy with the way we're playing. It's fun."BOSTON, MA — Celtics' Jayson Tatum was interviewed following the Celtics 125-119 overtime loss to the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night. Tatum told reporters: "I'm just happy with the way we're playing. It's fun. We're moving the ball, everyone's touching it. It's been fun the last two games." —————————————– – #celtics #NBA #CelticsCLNS The CLNS…2022-10-06T04:44:48Z

“How do I like playing the five? I mean, it’s not traditional, I was the tallest guy out there. I mean, we’re all interchangeable, can move the ball, so it’s not like I’m just sitting in the post setting screens. We all rebound, I might be guarding the tallest player, but I don’t look at it like I’m playing the five, I’m just the tallest player out there at that moment,” Tatum said.

Tatum’s ability to rebound, guard up and down multiple positions, and initiate the offense means that he’s a solid choice to occupy numerous positions within the Celtics rotation, and as we’re in the era of positionless basketball, it makes sense that he would see fleeting minutes as a center, especially while his team is waiting on some of their legitimate big men to return from injury.

Sam Hauser Praises Malcolm Brogdon

While Tatum’s latest position has certainly been a point of conversation for Celtics fans and media, Malcolm Brogdon’s quick start to life with Boston has also got people looking ahead with excitement.

Speaking to the media following the Celtics’ loss to Toronto, Sam Hauser spoke glowingly of Brogdon and noted they already have good chemistry together on the court.

Sam Hauser on Starting Celtics Preseason 9-13 from 3PT RangeBOSTON, MA — Celtics wing Sam Hauser was interviewed following the Celtics 125-119 overtime loss to the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night. On the atmosphere and noise at TD Garden, Hauser said "It's been cool these last couple games to take it all in. I can't wait for the crowd in the regular season." Hauser…2022-10-06T03:01:40Z

“Two Virginia guys. We have a little connection there. I know when I’m playing with him to stay ready because he knows where I’m at on the floor at all times. He’s easy to play with. He’s a playmaker. He gets others open as well as himself. It’s fun to play with him,” Hauser said.

Despite Hauser’s kind words on Brogdon, the veteran guard struggled with his shooting on October 5, going one-for-six from the field and registering just four points – however, the Georgia native did chip in with nine assists, giving him a total of 18 dimes over his first two games with the team – something which shouldn’t go unnoticed, as it was bench playmaking that sorely let the team down in the NBA Finals last season.

Derrick White Praises Sam Hauser

At the moment, the Celtics locker room is not short of confidence, especially in each other. We’ve seen both Hauser and Jaylen Brown praise Brogdon, and we also saw Derrick White heap some praise onto Sam Hauser, who has been one of the success stories of the pre-season thus far.

In the October 5 game against Toronto, Hauser dropped 22 points, pulled down three rebounds, and dished out two assists while shooting 80% from deep, making it two straight games that the sophomore has provided a spark off the bench.

Speaking to the media on October 4 – a day before Hauser had another big night, White heaped praise on the sharpshooter’s ability, noting that he hasn’t seen a shooter that talented during his time in the NBA.

“Obviously, he can shoot it. He’s crazy. One of the best shooters I’ve seen, but he does a lot of other things. He’s bigger than you think he is, he’s working on crashing the glass, creating a little bit there too. From that first year to the second year, you see a lot of big jumps, so it’s great to see that from Sam,” White said.

With two more pre-season games to go, Hauser still has a lot of work left if he wants to stake his claim for regular minutes once the season gets underway in a couple of weeks.
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