The Boston Celtics followed up their disappointing NBA In-Season Quarterfinals loss to the Indiana Pacers on December 4 with a five-game homestand's worth of victories, three of which came by double digits and, oddly enough, four of which came against just two teams. After single-digit victories against the Cleveland Cavaliers on December 12 and 14, Boston beat the Orlando Magic on December 15 and 17 by 17 points each.
Following the latest triumph over Orlando, Jayson Tatum sent a message to the rest of the Association: these were the kinds of performances the 2022-23 Celtics lacked. And that should scare all 29 othe teams.
“What we did this week was impressive, I feel like,” Tatum said (h/t MassLive). “I’m not certain that last year we would have won all these games. But playing two really good teams that present different challenges; teams that, especially Orlando, we struggled with in the past. Especially Friday, we had three bigs out and the way that we played in that game, we figured out a way to win. Winning these four games at home, I don’t know what everybody else thought, but it was impressive and I was proud of the way we played.”
Jayson Tatum downplayed Eddie House comments about Boston Celtics losing to 'garbage' Magic in 2022
When asked about Eddie House's infamous "garbage" comments about the Magic, which led to a four-game win streak for Orlando over Boston that was snapped on December 15, Tatum denied ever hearing them.
"I didn't see that they said that about Eddie, I love Eddie, that's my guy," Tatum said (h/t NBC Sports Boston).
House's comments took place during NBC Sports Boston's after-show on December 16, 2022.
"They got 10 wins," House prefaced before saying, "They're still garbage. They're still not a good basketball team. They won't make the playoffs. They won't make the play-in game."
Consider Tatum unbothered with the Magic hurdle jumped in consecutive outings during a 2023-24 season the All-NBA forward is confident the Cs can clear their ultimate hurdle: Banner 18.