1/30/23 by Brigham Loveland
Boston Celtics star forward Jayson Tatum will head to Salt Lake City as a participant in the NBA All-Star game this February. The former Duke Blue Devil will play in his fourth consecutive All-Star game and will be a frontcourt starter for the third year in a row. Jaylen Brown, Tatum’s counterpart, just missed the cut to be alongside Tatum as a starter, but will most certainly be named a reserve player.
After the game against the Knicks, Tatum reacted to the news of being named an All-Star Starter in the 22-23 season. He said, “While I may have expected to make the team, I never want to take it for granted. It’s an honor and it’s just something I dreamed about as a kid. So, to be named an All-Star starter meant a lot. I was very excited. It’s pretty cool.” via nesn.com
The St. Louis native is having a career year for the Celtics. Averaging a career-high 31.1 points a game, shooting almost 47% from the field, and averaging 8.7 rebounds a game. Tatum has had incredible scoring performances this season, one of them being a 51-point game against the Charlotte Hornets on the 16th, where he knocked down 7 three-pointers. Because of the outstanding year, not only does Tatum deserve the role as an All-Star starter, but has earned himself a spot in the MVP conversation.
The Boston Celtics are 36-15 which is the best record, not only in the Eastern Conference, but in the NBA. The Celtics top the league in almost every measure. Statistically, Boston averages 117.5 points a game which is 3rd best in the NBA, and the best in the Eastern Conference. Their offense isn’t the sole reason for their success, the Celtics’ defense is also one of the best in the NBA. Even with last year’s Defensive Player of the Year Marcus Smart sidelined, Boston is 6th in opponent points per game.
The Celtics lost three games in a row, including a heartbreaking home overtime loss to the New York Knicks. Boston played their last game of January against their longtime rival Los Angeles Lakers. The last time these two teams played in December, the Celtics secured the road win, 122-118. It was another overtime battle but this time the Celtics came out victorious with a final score of 125-121. The Celtics will play eight more games before the All-Star break. Three of those games will be against the Nets, 76ers, and Bucks, who are all fighting for the number-one spot in the East.