Since he broke onto the scene during his rookie year back in 2017-18, Jayson Tatum has established himself as one of the most promising young players in the league and has worked his way towards receiving the moniker of “face of the franchise” for the storied Boston Celtics.
With this title on such a historic team, it’s safe to say that expectations for him to perform are rather high and, with his 2x All-Star selections and an All-NBA nod to his name through five years of action, it’s unquestionable that he’s managed to live up to these pressures.
However, his first few performances during the 2021-22 campaign has been somewhat uncharacteristic for the budding superstar, so much so, in fact, that the folks at Bleacher Report have gone on to label his start to the year as being among one of the worst of when it comes to the league’s other top-shelf talents.
Citing his overall shooting woes through three games of play coupled with the uninspiring record of 1-2 for the Boston Celtics, writer Sean Highkin believes that the 23-year-old’s production has arguably been even worse than what his recently improved counting stats may suggest:
"Tatum’s overall numbers look a lot better after his 31-point, nine-rebound effort in Sunday’s win over the Rockets, the Celtics’ first victory of the season. But his first two games couldn’t have gone much worse. In Boston’s season-opening double-overtime loss to the Knicks, he shot 2-of-15 from three-point range and 7-of-30 overall. He followed that up with five turnovers in 30 minutes in a blowout loss to the Raptors.Hopefully, the performance against Houston is a sign of things to come. But it came against a tanking Rockets team, so take it with a grain of salt given that he struggled against good teams. Tatum should return to form, and the Celtics will start winning as they get healthier, but the first week of the season was one to forget."
Through three games of action, the Boston Celtics stud has posted averages of 23 points, 8.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and a block on 40 percent shooting from the floor and just 27 percent shooting from deep.
For this team to have a chance of reaching its full potential, Tatum must play at the level at which we have seen him play at during his career (24.9 points, 7.2 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 1.3 steals, and just shy of a block on 45 percent shooting from the floor and nearly 40 percent shooting from deep over the two seasons prior).
While it’s hard to say Boston’s centerpiece has been the biggest reason for why they have gotten off to such a slow start to the year, his production certainly has not helped.