Jayson Tatum has been balling for the Boston Celtics this season, he averaged career highs in points 23.4, rebounds 7.0, assists 3.0, three-point percentage 40.3, and effective field goal percentage 52.7. Tatum was also named an All-Star for the first in career back in February for the Eastern Conference.
Tatum has also played well in the NBA bubble as he helped the Celtics sweep the Philadelphia 76ers, averaging 27 points and just shy of 10 rebounds against Philly.
The emerging superstar has been turning heads dating back to his time at Duke University.
Former Duke standout turned ESPN NBA Analyst, Jay Williams was recently a guest on Heavy With Scoop B [Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson] and shared a story about Tatum from his time at Duke.
“Four years ago, he was a freshman in college, coming in at Duke,” Williams said. “Jabari Parker was doing his thing in the league around that time with Milwaukee. I watched JT give Jabari [Parker] the business for an hour straight. I’m not talking about college moves. I’m talking about the same moves he’s doing right now. He was doing as a 17-year-old. I remember walking away [saying] this dude is special.”
Williams also shared that Tatum reminded him to another Duke alum, Basketball Hall of Famer, Grant Hill.
“The way he was playing before the pandemic, the way he’s playing right now, he’s going to be in MVP conversations in years to come. He may be one of the best players we will ever have that has donned a Duke uniform. He’s not that athletic, but his skill set reminds of Grant Hill.”
Back in January of 2019, Grant Hill was asked what does Tatum need to do reach the Hall of Fame.
“I think he’s on his way,” Hill said. “… He’s in a great situation, which is really good. In some ways you could say it’s a blessing and a curse. Because (the Celtics) are so talented, he doesn’t have to do as much, which is great for a young player, and they have a chance to win a championship, and have a lot of runway for the next five, six, eight years. But also it doesn’t really allow us to see the full package. I think we did see that last year when injuries hit that team, and now it was like they needed him to show and prove, and he did. And he was just a rookie. 19 years old. I think time. Time is what he needs, and I can’t wait to watch and see what he ultimately becomes. It’s scary.”
Earlier this season due to his stellar play this season, ESPN Analyst and Celtics great, Kenderick Perkins shared that Tatum should be in the MVP conversation.
“He is a superstar in the making, listen, Jayson Tatum overnight went from an All-Star to possibly being in the MVP conversation,” said Perkins.
In Sunday’s win against the Toronto Raptors in game one of the Eastern Conference Semi Finals, Tatum had 21 points, nine rebounds, and two assists. Game two will be on Tuesday.