Jayson Tatum
Jayson Tatum
23-Year-Old ForwardF
Boston Celtics
2021 Fantasy Outlook
Tatum returns to the Celtics after his second consecutive All-Star season as well as a significant role on gold-winning Team USA at the Summer Olympics. Tatum and fellow All-Star Jaylen Brown are now the undisputed leaders of the team after the Celtics, in June, traded Kemba Walker to OKC (he was later bought out and signed with the Knicks). Last year, Walker attempted 15.7 shots per game. Expect some of those attempts to shift to Tatum, who led the team last year with 26.4 points and 20.6 shot attempts per game. Little is known about new Celtics' coach Ime Udoka as he begins his reign in Boston. He has mentioned that Boston most improve on last year's 27th rank in total assists. That implies that Tatum, who averaged a career-high 4.3 dimes per game last year, might be expected to distribute even more. Udoka has hinted at pushing both Tatum and Brown harder than prior coach Brad Stevens ever did. Despite four years of NBA experience, Tatum is still only 23 years old. There is still upside for him to improve on a 2020-21 season in which he ranked 10th in the NBA in points per game, 11th in total three-pointers and 13th in usage percentage. Keep in mind that Tatum has improved his points, rebounds and assists per game in each of his four years in the Association. And he's always a threat to earn two-plus combined steals and blocks per contest. Expect Tatum to contend for All-NBA status in 2021-22. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a five-year, $163 million contract extension with the Celtics in November of 2020.
Personal Bio

Jayson Christopher Tatum was born in St. Louis to Brandy Cole and Justin Tatum. His father Justin played college basketball at Saint Louis University. Jayson averaged 29.5 points and 9.1 rebounds during his senior season at Chaminade College Preparatory School. Afterward, he was named 2016 Gatorade Male Athlete of the Year, Gatorade National Player, a Naismith Award finalist, a Naismith Trophy All-American, a MaxPreps All-American and USA Today All-USA First Team pick. He is the leader and founder of The Jayson Tatum Foundation (www.TheJaysonTatumFoundation.org), headquartered in St. Louis. Each year, the foundation sponsors approximately 100 boys and girls to attend an all-expenses paid one-day summer Basketball Camp and Leadership Program. Learn more about the forward @jaytatum0 on both instagram and twitter.

College/International Summary

Jayson Tatum played one year at Duke before declaring for the NBA Draft. During his lone season (2016-17), the 18-year-old produced 16.8 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.3 steals and 1.1 blocks per contest. He delivered those stats while sharing the court with five other players who would go on to have NBA careers. Tatum was one of five finalists for the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award. He earned USBWA All-District III honors, was a third-team All-ACC selection and a member of the ACC All-Freshman Team. Tatum missed the first eight games of the season with a foot injury. For the season, Tatum ranked fifth in the ACC in free-throw percentage (.849), seventh in defensive rebounds (6.0), 10th in total rebounds (7.3) and 12th in scoring (16.8). Tatum's Blue Devils made it to the NCAA Tournament but lost in the second round.

Practices Thursday
FBoston Celtics
Knee
July 15, 2021
Tatum (knee) went through a full practice Thursday, John Karalis of BostonSportsJournal.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Tatum sat out Tuesday's exhibition game against Argentina due to right knee soreness, but it was apparently a minor issue. In addition to a full practice, Tatum got in extra work afterward with new Celtics coach Ime Udoka. It seems like there's a fair chance he plays in Friday's second-to-last exhibition game, which is against Australia.
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Past Season Summaries
2020

Coming off his All-Star 2019-20 season, Tatum returned to Boston for his fourth season in the Association. In 2020-21, The Duke product delivered per game career highs in points (26.4), rebounds (7.4) and assists (4.3), plus shot a career-best 86.8 percent from the charity stripe. On Jan. 3, during a win at Detroit, Tatum dished a career-high 12 assists to go with 24 points and two blocks. The next night, Tatum delivered 40 points on 11-for-19 shooting during a road win over the Raptors. On Feb. 17, Tatum generated 35 points (11-21 FG, 3-9 3Pt, 10-11 FT), six boards, six assists and two steals in a home loss to the Hawks. In March, Tatum was named to his second career All-Star game and started for Team Durant. In the ASG, Tatum delivered 21 points, seven assists and four rebounds over 16 minutes of run. On Apr. 30, the forward scored a career-high 60 points (20-37 FG, 5-7 3Pt, 15-17 FT) in a home win over the Spurs. Tatum's 60 points tied the franchise high set by Larry Bird in 1985. Tatum started all five of Boston's playoff games versus Brooklyn and posted 30.6 points, 5.8 boards, 1.6 blocks, 1.2 steals and 2.8 made three-pointers over 37 minutes per post-season contest. He has four more years remaining on his contract with the Celtics.

2019

Tatum emerged as a star for the Celtics in his third NBA season, blowing away his prior offensive output with 23.4 points per game along with career-high averages in rebounds (7.0), assists (3.0), steals (1.4) and blocks (0.9). He also hit 2.9 threes per game -- more than his prior two seasons put together. The 22-year-old forward made his first All-Star team and was named Eastern Conference Player of the Month after averaging 30.7 points per game in February. He finished 15th in the NBA in points per game thanks to dropping 30-plus points on 15 occasions and topping out with a career-high 41 twice -- Jan. 11 against the Pelicans and Feb. 23 against the Lakers. Tatum also delivered 10 double-doubles, including scoring 32 points with a season-high 13 boards against Houston on Feb. 29. He elevated his game even more in the playoffs, averaging a double-double with 25.7 points, 10.0 rebounds, 5.0 assists, 1.0 steals and 1.2 blocks across 40.6 minutes per game. Over the course of Boston's 17-game postseason run, Tatum double-doubled nine times, including a career-high 15 rebounds in Game 4 of the first round against Philadelphia. His biggest postseason scoring performance came in Game 2 of the second round against Toronto, when Tatum put up 34 points, thanks in no small part to a perfect 14-of-14 performance from the line. For his efforts, Tatum was named to the All-NBA Third Team, marking his first career selection.

2018

Though it wasn't quite the break for stardom that some were expecting, Tatum showed significant improvement in his sophomore season, increasing his stats across the board. His scoring ticked up nearly two points to 15.7 per game, he added a full rebound per game to his rookie-season average (now 6.0), and his assists (2.1) and steals (1.1) ticked up as well. Although he was unable to match the prior season's incredible accuracy from three-point range, Tatum still shot a respectable 37.3 percent from long range and 45.0 percent on the whole. He also improved his already strong free-throw shooting, making 85.5 percent of his shots from the charity stripe. On Oct. 20, the third game of the season, Tatum exploded for 24 points and a career-high 14 rebounds during a win over the Knicks -- the first of his nine double-doubles on the year. During a road win at Portland on Nov. 11, the second-year forward drained a career-high five three-pointers en route to 27 points, adding eight rebounds. On Jan. 14, Tatum scored a career-high 34 points to go with five boards and three blocks against the Nets. Tatum finished the season first the Celtics in rebounds, and second in points and blocks. Come playoff time, he remained a valuable and versatile contributor, averaging 15.2 points with 6.7 rebounds and 1.1 steals. He scored 26 points in Game 2 of the first round against Indianapolis and double-doubled twice consecutively in Games 3 and 4 of the second round against Milwaukee.

2017

The Celtics traded down from the first pick in the NBA draft to the third to draft Tatum out of Duke, and the move appears to have paid off already. The 19-year-old ended up starting all 80 games in which he appeared for Boston, posting a well-rounded stat line with 13.9 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.0 steals per game. Tatum was an efficient shooter from the field (47.5 percent), but he particularly shined from beyond the arc, as his 43.4 percent clip on three-pointers ranked eighth in the NBA. Tatum announced his presence to the league with a double-double in his debut Oct. 17 against Cleveland, notching 14 points and 10 rebounds. He went on to collect four double-doubles on the season. Tatum scored in double digits in 64 of his 80 games, topping out with 27 points alongside a season-high-tying four steals Feb. 2 against Atlanta. He finished second on the team behind only Kyrie Irving in total points scored (1,112). When injuries forced Irving to miss the playoffs, the rookie stepped up to assume far more responsibility on offense. Through 19 playoff games, Tatum led the Celtics with 18.5 points per game while shooting 47.1 percent from the field. Tatum double-doubled in his first career playoff contest, tacking up 19 points and 10 boards against the Bucks. He exceeded his regular-season best with 28 points in the opening game of Boston's second-round series against the Sixers. That was one of a streak of seven consecutive playoff games in which he scored 20-plus; Tatum became the youngest player in NBA history to achieve that feat. Following the season, he was named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team.

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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
Tatum had a breakout 2019-20 campaign -- his third season in the league. He turned the corner in mid-January, and during his final 19 appearances before the season's hiatus, Tatum averaged 28.3 points, 7.4 rebounds, 3.9 threes, 3.2 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.0 blocks. During that stretch, he also shot 48.2 percent from the field, 46.5 percent from three and 75.8 percent from the free-throw line. His strong season resulted in his first All-Star appearance, and he was selected to the All-NBA Third Team. Tatum was no stranger to the big game, either, securing 10 double-doubles and two 40-point games, including a performance against the Pelicans that featured 41 points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals in just 30 minutes. Heading into the 2020-21 season, Tatum figures to be the No. 1 option on the Celtics as he emerges into stardom, especially with the departure of Gordon Hayward to Charlotte. His stretch toward the end of the 2019-20 campaign shows his upside, and as a result, fantasy managers should consider selecting him toward the end of the first round of most drafts.
After a third-place finish for Rookie of the Year, much was expected of Tatum in his sophomore season. But the return of Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward seemed to dampen Tatum's development. In particular, Hayward and Tatum were an awkward fit together during the first half of the season, resulting in many ugly mid-range jumpers for both forwards. Eventually, Hayward was moved to the bench, freeing things up, somewhat, for Tatum. The Duke product ended the year with a slight uptick in points, rebounds and assists over his rookie season, but didn't earn the big leap forward many predicted. That could change in year three, now that the Celtic depth chart has thinned due to the departures of Irving, Al Horford, Marcus Morris, Terry Rozier and Aron Baynes. Despite the addition of Kemba Walker, some in Boston are referring to this season as "Plan J", with more of an emphasis on youngsters Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Early on, it will be interesting to see if Walker or Tatum are the first options on offense. The door is open for the 21-year-old Tatum to be a true leader in Boston, especially if he can resist those ugly mid-range jumpers.
Had it not been for historic debuts from Ben Simmons and Donovan Mitchell, Tatum would have been the Rookie of the Year frontrunner. The No. 3 overall pick got off to a red-hot start from beyond the arc and eventually settled into his role as one of the Celtics' premier scoring threats. Tatum was at his best in the postseason, averaging 18.5 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.7 assists while shooting better than 47 percent from the field during the Celtics' run to the Eastern Conference Finals. Of course, Tatum's breakout may not have been possible had it not been for Gordon Hayward's season-ending injury five minutes into opening night, and the biggest hurdle facing the 20-year-old may be how he'll fit into the offensive hierarchy with Hayward back in the mix. In a normal situation, Tatum would be on the short list of players poised to make the leap toward legitimate stardom, but on one of the deepest teams in recent memory, Tatum may be forced to settle for a secondary role for the time being, provided Hayward, Kyrie Irving, Al Horford and Jaylen Brown all stay relatively healthy. With that in mind, expectations should be tempered for Tatum, though he should again be a hyper-efficient scorer for his age, who carries significantly more value in dynasty/multi-season leagues.
The third overall pick in the draft had a very exciting Summer League before a foot issue forced an early exit. During six games at Utah and Las Vegas, Tatum averaged 18.2 points and 8.9 rebounds, demonstrating pro-level one-on-one offensive moves that included a deadly step-back jumper and quick drives to the bucket. Supported by 20-year-old Jaylen Brown who often played point guard, the 19-year-old Tatum showed flashes of greatness which underlined GM Danny Ainge’s assertion that had Boston stuck with the number one pick, they still would have drafted Tatum. With Summer League behind him, Tatum must face the bigger issue of where he’ll play knowing that Boston just added free agent star Gordon Hayward. Hayward, Tatum and Brown are all small forwards, so Coach Brad Stevens will need to get creative to make sure all three get valuable minutes. Expect Brown to see time at shooting guard while the 6’8” Tatum plays some undersized power forward. The Celtics lack an obvious power forward starter, so Tatum should expect some small-ball minutes at the four. Newly acquired Marcus Morris could also be an impediment to major minutes for Tatum. It will be interesting to see how Stevens balances the team’s Finals aspirations while attempting to develop his two young stars, Tatum and Brown. The Celtics have arguably the deepest roster in the Association, which will make it difficult for Tatum to see big time minutes during his rookie season.
More Fantasy News
Dealing with knee soreness
FBoston Celtics
Knee
July 13, 2021
Tatum will not play in Team USA's exhibition against Argentina on Tuesday because of right knee soreness, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports.
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Goes down swinging in loss
FBoston Celtics
June 1, 2021
Tatum tallied 32 points (12-27 FG, 4-11 3Pt, 4-4 FT), nine rebounds, five assists and two blocks in 41 minutes during Tuesday's 123-109 loss to the Nets.
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Drops 40 points in loss
FBoston Celtics
May 30, 2021
Tatum dropped 40 points (10-22 FG, 3-7 3Pt, 17-17 FT), seven rebounds, five assists, two blocks and a steal across 40 minutes in Sunday's loss to the Nets.
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Explodes for 50 points
FBoston Celtics
May 28, 2021
Tatum delivered 50 points (16-30 FG, 5-11 3Pt, 13-15 FT), seven assists, six rebounds, two steals and a block across 41 minutes in Friday's win over the Nets.
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Will play in Game 3
FBoston Celtics
May 27, 2021
Tatum (eye) will play in Friday's Game 3 against the Nets, Tim Bontemps of ESPN.com reports.
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