Jayson Tatum Sends Strong Message to Warriors After Celtics’ Game 1 Win

Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics.

Getty Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics.

The Boston Celtics walked out of Chase Center with a win on Thursday night, taking down the Golden State Warriors 120-108 in Game 1 of the NBA Finals. A red-hot fourth-quarter performance was enough to seal the deal for the Celtics.

Boston’s superstar forward, Jayson Tatum, didn’t have the best shooting night, but he impacted the game in other ways. His 13 assists were the most ever recorded by a player in their first NBA Finals game. In addition, he had a strong message for the Warriors after the win.

When asked about what helped the Celtics respond in the fourth, Tatum gave the Warriors a ton of respect, but he also said that Boston had been in the situation before. Despite Golden State’s great play, Tatum said the Celtics knew what they had to do to win.

“The message at the start of the fourth was, we’ve been here before,” Tatum explained. “We know what it takes to overcome a deficit like that. Obviously, that’s a great team. It’s not going to be easy. But just knowing we’ve been in that situation before and we’ve gotten ourselves out of it. We had a lot of time left, right? It wasn’t time to hang your head or be done, it was time to figure it out.”

Jayson Tatum BAD Shooting Night: "We won, right? … All I was worried about was getting the win."SAN FRANCISCO, CA — Celtics Forward Jayson Tatum was interviewed after Boston beat the Golden State Warriors a 120-108 in Game 1 of the NBA Finals. Boston closed the Game 1 on a 40-16 run while Jayson Tatum shot 3-17 tonight. Tatum's career high 13 assists are the most ever for a player in their…2022-06-03T04:58:52Z

In addition to discussing Boston’s mentality, Tatum talked about his mindset throughout the game as he continued to struggle shooting the ball, instead relying on his new-and-improved playmaking.

Tatum: ‘All I Was Worried About’

When asked about how he felt after such a poor shooting performance, Tatum responded with joy. He said that he was just happy the Celtics got the win, and that’s all he’s concerned about moving forward.

“Ecstatic, right? 40 points in the fourth quarter? J.B. played big. Al, Payton, D-White. Those guys made big shots, timely shots as well. And we won, right? I had a bad shooting night. I just tried to impact the game in other ways.” Tatum said. “We’re in the championship. We’re in the Finals. All I was worried about was trying to get a win, and we did. That’s all that matters at this point. So I don’t expect to shoot that bad again. But if it means we keep winning, I’ll take it.”

Tatum shot 3-for-17 from the field and 1-for-5 from three-point range, but his 13 assists led the game. He was able to set up his teammates for easy basketball time and time again, not letting his rough shooting night affect him.

The Celtics star gave head coach Ime Udoka a ton of credit for his advancements as a playmaker, saying that he always encourages him.

Tatum on Udoka: ‘Message From Day 1’

At the beginning of the season, Udoka stressed the importance of Tatum becoming a playmaker. During his post-game press conference, Tatum talked about Udoka’s message, saying that he’s helped him improve a ton.

“Yeah, I think that was kind of his message from day one, just to challenge me to be the best player that I can be and improve other areas of my game,” Tatum revealed. “We watched a lot of film throughout the course of the season of games, just areas, things I could improve on. You know, obviously, playmaking was one. Drawing a lot of attention. Just help the team out as much as possible. So he’s done a great job with challenging myself, just the group, in that aspect.”

The Celtics recorded 33 assists in their Game 1 win, while the Warriors were only able to scrounge up 24. Boston’s 33 were also the most they’ve recorded in a game yet this postseason.

Tatum and the Celtics put on a passing clinic in Game 1, and their confidence heading into the fourth helped them earn a big-time win.

Game 2 of the NBA Finals will take place this Sunday at 8:00 p.m. Eastern time.

Read More
Comment Here
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x