Celtics’ Jayson Tatum Takes Major Shot At NBA In-Season Tournament

Boston Celtics, NBA News
NBA Analysis Network

Boston Celtics star forward Jayson Tatum gave a less-than-glowing review of the NBA’s In-Season Tournament, according to Jack Simone of CelticsBlog.com.

Simone quoted Tatum’s comments on the tournament and one particular rule that the Celtics’ star is certainly not a fan of:

“I mean, it’s cool. I know that the fans enjoy the court. The court is cool. The different courts that each home team has. I know Tuesday, it’s complicated. There are a million different things that can happen. So, that shit is a little tricky. But I think it’s been great. Give guys something to look forward to early in the season. And yeah, I guess we’ll see what happens on Tuesday.”

Simone also stated that what appears to be Tatum’s biggest issue with the tournament is the rules regarding point differential.

One of the primary tie-breakers in the In-Season Tournament’s Group Play stage is the point differential after each of the teams’ tournament games. The only prevailing tie-break is that of head-to-head matchups against group opponents, so the value of padding a team’s point differential is quite evident.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics Updates

The losing teams in these Group Play matchups will naturally take issue as many have argued for decades that the very concept goes against the traditional spirit of the game, as Tatum suggests.

The Boston Celtics recently came off of a loss to the Orlando Magic in their most recent In-Season Tournament game. In that matchup, the Magic, who led comfortably since more than halfway through the fourth quarter, went on a 9-4 run over the final two minutes of the game, including a last-second bucket by Franz Wagner to ice the cake.

There’s little doubt that this game was at least part of the motivation behind Tatum’s comments.

Tatum is far from the only player in the league to take issue with the point differential rule. Several members of the Detroit Pistons took exception to a last-second three-pointer from Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid back on Nov. 10.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics Updates

Contrary to Tatum’s stance, Embiid appears to enjoy the added challenge. After the Sixers’ game against the Pistons, Embiid told Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer:

“The only thing I noticed was people trying to fight me because they don’t know the rules. When it comes to the tournament, points matter. I wish that shot would have counted — and I actually didn’t know that they was trying to fight me. So I wish I would have seen that, but everything counts. It’s fun to challenge for something else on the team. Wherever that takes us, we’ll take it.”

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics Updates

The In-Season Tournament continues to prove controversial even among the league’s players. Regardless, all signs point towards it being a fixture in the NBA going forward, whether fans or players like it or not. There don’t appear to be many more options than jumping aboard the hype train.

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