Jayson Tatum, in this series, had not been good prior to this game. 4 points in game 1 (not like it mattered because the Celtics dominated so hard but remember, I am not mad and never was mad), 5 points in game 2 (worse because this time it was the Celtics getting dominated). For a guy who was their leading scorer in the playoffs last year, that’s bad. Not only bad, but WORRYINGLY bad. Like, did Kobe put a time-delayed curse on him that would only activate in the second round of the playoffs?
Much ink has been spilled over the idea that Kobe somehow ruined Tatum by working out with him during the offseason. It’s a fun thing to think about, the lifelong Laker getting his final revenge on the Celtics, but I don’t think he made much of a difference. Although, watching this vid, a vid where 5 of his 7 buckets are inefficient (but smooth) midrange jumpers, a case can be made. Truth is, there will never be as much ball for him as there was in his rookie year, and I think he feels like he needs to make the most out of every time he gets it. Which for him, means shooting cruddy midrange jumpers.
Also, this is unrelated, but I’d like to apologize for all the foul calls Giannis is getting right now. Not like he’s not earning them, because he absolutely is except for a few cases, but it is making these games somewhat annoying to watch. So sorry, Celtics fans. You have a point, almost, with your incessant complaining about the refs.