Jayson Tatum Makes Strong Guarantee as Celtics Face Elimination

Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics

Getty Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics

Sitting in front of the media following the Boston Celtics 104-94 loss to the Golden State Warriors, Jayson Tatum cut a confident figure despite his team being one game away from elimination.

Tatum hasn’t been his usual self over these last five games, he’s struggled to score the ball, been uncharacteristically lackadaisical in possession, and has doubled down on his petulance towards the officials. However, despite his current struggles, the All-NBA wing approached his post-game press conference with a calmness that shone a light on his belief the Celtics can still win the Larry O’Brien trophy.

Jayson Tatum: "We ain't gotta win two in one day. We just gotta win Thursday." | BOS vs GSW Game 6SAN FRANCISCO, CA — Jayson Tatum was interviewed following the Celtics 104-94 loss to the Golden State Warriors in Game 5 of the 2022 NBA Finals on Monday night. Golden State now has a 3-2 series lead over Boston with a chance to close out the Celtics in Game 6 on Thursday night. On how…2022-06-14T05:15:26Z

In fairness, Tatum did address Boston’s propensity to get into debates with the officials, and while he has been the primary instigator in that area of late, he wasn’t the only one at fault on June 13.

“In those situations, especially on the road, regardless if we feel like calls are going our way or not, just in those moments we just got to be better not letting distractions, things like that, distract us. Down one going into the fourth quarter, just got to focus on what’s important at the time. That’s on all of us. We’ll regroup and bounce back. I’m sure of it,” Tatum said.

A Closer Look at Tatum’s Scoring Struggles

Scoring from beyond the perimeter hasn’t been an issue for Tatum in this series, but his interior game has left a lot to be desired, especially when pressuring the rim. According to Cleaning the Glass, the 24-year-old wing is shooting 50% at the rim, 28% from the floater area, and 21% from long mid-range, giving him a conversion rate of 25% inside of the arc.

For reference, against the Milwaukee Bucks, Tatum was converting 64% of his looks at the rim, 40% from floater range, and 32% from long mid-range, while against the Miami Heat his numbers were 62% at the rim, 44% from floater, and 45% from long mid-range.

So, yes, it’s true, Tatum isn’t scoring the ball at the same level he was earlier in the season. Perhaps his right shoulder, which he can often be seen clutching after contract, is limiting his release, or maybe the Warriors’ defensive scheme is paying dividends. Whatever the reason, the St. Louis native needs to rediscover his best form if Boston is going to win their next two games.

Jaylen Brown Keeping Faith

Another player who failed to hit his usual heights on June 13, was Jaylen Brown. The 25-year-old wing has arguably been Boston’s most reliable offensive weapon throughout the NBA Finals, but as the Celtics looked to snatch momentum, Brown failed to continue his recent hot streak.

Speaking to the media following the game, the Georgia native spoke about having unwavering faith in himself, and his team, and that he’s prepared to head into a game seven with an NBA championship on the line.

VideoVideo related to jayson tatum makes strong guarantee as celtics face elimination2022-06-14T17:22:57-04:00

“Your faith got to be at an all-time high. Our faith got to continue to be there. We got to play as a team, as a unit. All season long it’s kind of been like us versus everybody. I look at it as no different now. My faith is higher than it’s ever been before, so I’m looking forward to Game 6,” Brown told the media.

The Celtics will head back to Boston, where they will face the Warriors at the TD Garden on June 16, where anything less than a victory will see them finish as runners up, and heading for the post-season.

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