Some games you watch the Celtics, you think to yourself, “Man, Kobe Bean Bryant completely ruined Jayson Tatum’s development. He turned Tatum from a promising scoring wing into a midrange-obsessed chucker with an ego.”
There are other games you watch the Celtics and you think to yourself, “Man, Tatum might not play this well every night, but you can see that he has true superstar potential, with his perfect shooting mechanics and advanced driving ability. Working out with the Kobe Bean gave him an inside look at the mentality of an NBA champion and top three shooting guard in league history, which can only be a good thing.”
My thoughts are leaning more towards the latter after watching Tatum drop 26 on the Pacers, a total which would have been his third-highest of the season if it had occurred in the regular season and not the playoffs. Sure, Kobe Bean Bryant likely messed up the Celtics’ entire season by convincing Tatum that he wants to shoot contested midrange jimbos all day, but there’s plenty of time for Tatum to figure out what methods of scoring work best for him. Those methods might not be the same as Kobe’s methods.
Imagine if Marcus Smart worked out with Kobe. Not only would his defense get even more intense, but he would start monopolizing the ball like Spalding’s going out of business. I’d pay for that work out to happen if that meant that next year’s Celtic iteration is guaranteed to completely hate each other’s guts by tweek three.