May 20, 2024

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Jayson Tatum: 'It's lazy' to say teams can beat the Celtics

Jayson Tatum: 'It's lazy' to say teams can beat the Celtics

Jayson Tatum: 'It's lazy' to say teams can beat the Celtics Originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

BOSTON — There's no doubt about the talent of the Boston Celtics, but one of the popular criticisms of the team in recent years has been their rigidity.

This was especially the case in last year's Eastern Conference Finals loss to the Miami Heat, whose physical play proved too much for Boston in the seven-game series. However, in a rematch of the first round this year, the Celtics It seemed like a tougher team Where they defeated Miami in five games.

The Heat did their best to impress the C's by tarnishing the series. In the first game, Miami forward Caleb Martin made waves Controversial error On Jayson Tatum. While Jaylen Brown and others confronted Martin, Tatum reappeared and He immediately walked to the other side of the court To take his free throws.

Tatum took another snap in Game 4, A.J Foul after the whistle by Heat big man Bam Adebayo Which led to him falling and tweaking his ankle. After the game, Tatum Ignore the incident As an issue.

It has become more apparent with each playoff game that the Celtics are different from years past. After Wednesday Certain win in Game 5 Over in Miami, he had a message for those who still doubt their toughness.

“The world we live in is there has to be something wrong with every team. That's what they like to say,” Tatum said. “You can see how talented we are. I think it's lazy or easy to say teams can beat us. I never understood that. Like, what's the definition of toughness? Having louder people on your team? That… doesn't make you tough.”

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“Everyone has their own definition of what toughness is. Playing the right way, showing up every day to do your job without complaining. I think that's tough.”

There is no doubt that these Celtics fit that definition.

Tatum finished Game 5 against Miami with 16 points on 4-of-9 shooting while grabbing a team-high 12 rebounds. Derrick White and Jaylen Brown led the way in scoring with 25 points each, as the C's shot 40 percent from 3 (16-for-40) while holding Miami to just 84 points on 3-of-29 3-point shooting (10.3 percent).

The Celtics will meet either the Orlando Magic or the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference semifinals — two matchups that will continue to test their mettle. The Cavs currently lead this series 3-2 and will have a chance to win Game 6 on Friday.