Locked On Celtics podcast host John Karalis believes Jayson Tatum doesn’t take the regular season as seriously as he should because of the influence of two former veteran Boston Celtics teammates who won an NBA championship elsewhere before sharing a locker room with No. 0.
Kyrie Irving and Tristan Thompson, members of the 2015-16 NBA champion Cavaliers before teaming up with Tatum from 2017-2019 (in Irving’s case) and the 2020-21 season (in Thompson’s case), were accused by Karalis of “poisoning” Tatum.
“I keep going back to Kyrie (Irving) and Tristan Thompson,” Karalis prefaced before saying, “And I swear I feel like they poisoned Tatum’s brain. I feel like those guys, at the beginning, Tatum learned from Kyrie, that the regular season doesn’t matter. You’ve learned from Tristan Thompson that the regular season doesn’t matter. And I just don’t think he puts the same value (on the regular season). I really, I honestly believe that.”
The Kyrie Irving era of the Boston Celtics continues to live in infamy
For a franchise that was one game from an NBA Finals in 2018 and a winner of 49 games during the 2018-19 season, the Boston Celtics certainly suffered significantly from trading for Irving in the summer of 2017. Not only has Irving come out and relentlessly bashed the city of Boston and Celtics fans, he is now being credited with destroying the mindset of the team’s franchise cornerstone and MVP candidate.
When it’s all said and done, Irving will be recognized as one of the most talented guards to ever step foot onto the court — but also one of the most polarizing players to ever reach the top of the league as a multi-time All-Star.
Tristan Thompson was one of the worst free agent signings in Celtics history
In Danny Ainge’s final offseason in charge, Boston’s former GM made one of the worst signings in Celtics history when he inked Thompson to a two-year deal that the team moved on from after just one season.
After reaching the Eastern Conference finals down in the Disney World bubble, the Cs had to win an NBA Play-in game to qualify for the 2021 playoffs. His seven points and eight rebounds in starter minutes didn’t justify the damage he did in negatively influencing Tatum.