Fans Call out Jayson Tatum for 'Nightmare' Effort in Celtics' Game 3 Loss to BucksMay 7, 2022
Jayson Tatum's defense has been invaluable for his team during the 2022 NBA playoffs, but the Boston Celtics star got a taste of his own medicine in the Milwaukee Bucks' 103-101 victory in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.
Things got tense late as the Celtics outscored the Bucks 34-23 in the fourth quarter. Milwaukee managed to hold on. A game-tying putback by Al Horford came after the final buzzer.
Tatum delivered one of the game's biggest highlights with a right-handed jam as he finished despite a tough contest from Giannis Antetokounmpo.
That was only one of four makes for the three-time All-Star, though, as he shot 4-of-19 from the field and 0-of-6 from three-point territory.
His performance was in stark contrast to the rest of his effort to this point in the postseason. He averaged 28.0 points and 7.2 assists while shooting 44.0 percent from beyond the arc through Boston's first six games.
Tatum's lack of urgency on offense was surprising.
At times, it was a case of Murphy's law in action.
Credit the Bucks defense for almost totally neutralizing Boston's best player. Wesley Matthews was particularly effective against Tatum.
Head coach Ime Udoka and his staff can look at this loss one of two ways.
The Celtics continued to hang around deep into the fourth quarter and were a few defensive stops away from jumping ahead. That they could've plausibly won despite Tatum playing so poorly is encouraging.
Granted, Boston was also unable to capitalize on a golden opportunity to take a 2-1 series lead, in no small part because it got so little from Tatum. Milwaukee can firmly put itself in the driver's seat with a victory in Game 4 on Monday.