Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum is having an MVP season, and the three-time All-Star believes he is the best player on the court during the playoffs. At least that’s what he tells himself.
“I feel like I’m the best player when I walk off the court,” Tatum said following the Celtics’ 122-118 overtime win over the Los Angeles Lakers. Tatum finished the night with 44 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists in 44 minutes of play.
According to a few NBA betting sites, the Celtics have good odds to win the championship in 2023. Some sportsbooks still show good odds for the Milwaukee Bucks and Golden State Warriors.
“I feel like I’m the best player when I step on the court.” pic.twitter.com/BjPVwMNfLn
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) December 14, 2022
Of course, Tatum should feel like the best player on the court right now. The sixth-year forward recorded his fourth 40-point game of the season. And the 24-year-old has also recorded 13 double-doubles.
In 28 starts, the Duke product is averaging 30.2 points, 8.3 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 1.1 steals and 1.0 blocks per game. He is also shooting 47% from the floor and 36.2% from 3-point range.
In addition, Tatum leads the NBA in points (845), field goal attempts (593), minutes played (1,036) and minutes per game (37). He led the league in defensive win shares (4.6) last season, and now ranks seventh (1.3).
Celtics wing Jayson Tatum believes he is the best player on the court.
Twenty-nine games into the 2022-23 season, Tatum is the betting favorite to win the MVP. Many sportsbooks have the Celtics star ahead of Luka Doncic, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Joel Embiid.
Although the Celtics outshot Los Angeles 37-24 on Tuesday night, CS was outscored 60-45 in the second half. Boston played Al Hofford, who missed the fifth straight game.
However, the Lakers blew a 14-point lead in the fourth quarter.
This statistic is ridiculous 🔥 pic.twitter.com/djFZximFkO
— Celtics Junkies (@Celtics_Junkies) December 14, 2022
“Games are not won or lost in the fourth quarter or overtime,” Celtics interim coach Joe Mazzula said. “We have to be elite in managing the end of the third, the beginning of the fourth quarter.
“NBA games are where you win and lose, and we didn’t do a good job of managing that part of the game. So we will take the positives from how we worked to get back into the game and how we worked to finish the tournament, but we will focus on that dimension.
The Celtics are also averaging a league-best 119.4 points per game. Their offensive efficiency rating also ranks high (1.156). But Boston has struggled defensively against playoff teams.
They are 13th overall, allowing 112.6 points per game. Their defensive efficiency rating is 1.090, which ranks 14th in the league. Boston is one game ahead of the Milwaukee Bucks for the top seed in the Eastern Conference standings.