Six years, six Christmas Day video games.
As Jayson Tatum Jayson Tatum the Celtics have emerge as a staple Jayson Tatum of the NBA’s Christmas Day schedule, Jayson Tatum is thankful to be part of the league’s marquee tradition. When his Celtics play host to Giannis Antetekounmpo’s Milwaukee Bucks on Sunday, Tatum will have performed on Christmas each season for the Jayson Tatum reason that he entered the league in 2017.
“Jayson Tatum I by no means take that without any consideration,” Tatum stated.
Sunday’s Celtics-Bucks recreation – scheduled for 5 p.m. at TD Garden – will be the 0.33 game of the day, and it’s the first-class matchup on the slate. It will pit the pinnacle two groups within the Eastern Conference – the Celtics retook the No. 1 seed on Friday night with Jayson Tatum their win and the Bucks’ loss – and functions two MVP frontrunners in Tatum and Antetekounmpo. It’s additionally a rematch of final season’s interesting semifinal playoff series, received by means of the Celtics in seven games, and a potential Eastern Conference Finals preview.
Tatum has in no way played rather properly on Christmas Day – the Celtics are 2-3 in his 5 games and he’s most effective averaged 19.8 points in line with sport, which incorporates 25 points on 7-for-20 taking pictures as the C’s blew a huge second-1/2 cause the Bucks. But the Celtics superstar is cherishing another opportunity to play on a big NBA degree.
“It method loads,” Tatum said. “Everybody within the NBA has watched Christmas Day as a child and dreamed of being in that function, so it’s Jayson Tatum turn out to be a subculture for me and for us, being capable of play those ultimate six years. It’s a big deal. It’s special. Everybody and their households watch basketball all day, so it’s normally the most important matchups or games all and sundry wants to see. I’m always searching ahead to playing on Christmas. It’s usually amusing, the strength and excitement across the day, just all of the video games in popular.”White locks in
“I just checked out Jayson Tatum him and said, ‘Be competitive,’ ” Tatum stated. “He hasn’t been shooting the ball properly, however we want him to be competitive.”
White’s latest shooting struggles were emblematic of the team as he entered Friday 2-for-19 over his previous three video games. But he regarded to take Tatum’s message to heart. The guard attacked the basket with purpose and turned into rewarded with his satisfactory offensive sport in almost a month. White didn’t make a three-pointer in the win over the Timberwolves, but completed with 18 points on eight-for-13 capturing, which included making his first three pictures of the game inside the establishing minutes in the back of a refocused mindset.
“I simply tried to be competitive,” White said. “I experience like the previous few video games I wasn’t absolutely worried, and I just desired to try to be more aggressive and placed my effect on the game a bit bit. So I just went accessible and attempted to Jayson Tatum position that competitive foot forward.”
There was some thing else specific Jayson Tatum approximately White on Friday – the shield sported a brand new haircut. How much did that play a aspect in a desperately wanted overall performance?
“I guess all of it, right?” White joked. “I don’t understand. Just tried to trade a few things up. …
“I thought approximately doing it in advance inside the year, but then I wimped out approximately it and so I become just like, ‘Why now not?’ And I went for it.”
Whatever the motive for White’s performance, his teammates had been happy to see it.
“D-White is the last teammate, any individual that everyone would love to play with,” Tatum stated. “Just letting him Jayson Tatum realize that we need him and I love gambling with him and I want him to be competitive. I simply love the way he came out to start the sport, being aggressive from the jump.”‘Best version’ revealed
The Celtics’ three-point capturing problems persisted on Friday night as they went thirteen-for-forty six from long variety. In their seven-game shooting stoop, they’re connecting on just 28.nine percent of shots from deep. But Friday represented an vital development: they figured out the way to win in spite of those struggles.
“To shoot 28 percent from 3 and win like that suggests the great stuff we did at the margins,” Celtics period in-between educate Joe Mazzulla stated. “Free throws, now not fouling, offensive rebounds, extra possessions.”
When the 3s weren’t Jayson Tatum falling, the Celtics attacked the ring and went 31-for-54 on -tips and were rewarded with 26 loose throw attempts. They corralled 20 offensive rebounds and converted those into 20 2nd-danger points. A weakness for maximum of the season, the Celtics have produced 25 and 20 offensive boards over their final two video games – their Jayson Tatum highest outputs of the season.
The Celtics suffered on a few lapses all through the night time, but for the maximum element, the intensity, physicality and hard plays have been made that had been important to overcome their shortcomings and give them a threat to shrink back from the Wolves with their fourth-region surge.
“I think that what we noticed within the 2nd half of final sport, and we saw tonight, is the quality model of our team,” Mazzulla said. “We just need to decide to that night time in and night out. If we’re bodily and mentally harder and we work at it, the talent and the entirety else will take care of itself due to the fact we’ve got that. …
“The Jayson Tatum high-quality component I concept we did become we made hard performs. Driving to the basket and completing with contact is a tough Jayson Tatum play. Passing the ball while you don’t have a layup is a difficult play. Getting 20 offensive rebounds is the hard play, and I thought we did that.”