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#pounditThursday, July 18, 2024

Jayson Tatum has honest take on potentially not winning Finals MVP

Jayson Tatum puts his hand in the air

May 15, 2022; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum (0) celebrates during the second half of their win over the Milwaukee Bucks in game seven of the second round of the 2022 NBA playoffs at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Celtics enter Monday night’s NBA Finals matchup just one win away from winning banner No. 18. Securing that win is all that matters to Jayson Tatum.

Tatum recently sat down with ESPN’s Malika Andrews ahead of Game 5 against the Dallas Mavericks at TD Garden in Boston, Mass.

Andrews asked Tatum how important winning Finals MVP is to the 5-time All-Star.

“It’s important, but it’s not like the main thing,” Tatum responded. “Isiah Thomas didn’t win Finals MVP every time. Tim Duncan didn’t win Finals MVP every time. Larry Bird, Steph Curry only has one. Kobe won two out of five championships.

“As a competitor, you want to win and accomplish everything in front of you. But I would not the slightest bit be sad that I didn’t win Finals MVP. I would be ecstatic just to win the Finals.”

Tatum hasn’t had his best series through the first four games of the NBA Finals. The 26-year-old has averaged just 20.0 points on 36.5% from the field and 29.0% from beyond the arc. He’s failed to hit the 20-point mark in three of the four contests thus far.

Jaylen Brown, who won the Eastern Conference Finals MVP award, has led the team in scoring with his 20.8 points per game on 49.2% shooting.

On the other hand, Tatum has led the team in rebounds (7.8) and assists (6.3) per game. Tatum has also drawn the most defensive attention from the Mavericks, which has opened up the floor for the rest of his team.

Barring a miraculous Dallas comeback from down 3-0, Tatum still has a strong case to take home two trophies once the NBA Finals end.

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