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#pounditSunday, December 4, 2022

Jayson Tatum sent text message to Kobe Bryant before Game 7

Jayson Tatum warming up

Jan 4, 2020; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum (0) during warm ups prior to the against the Chicago Bulls at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

Jayson Tatum had a big performance in Game 7 against the Miami Heat on Sunday night to help his team advance to the NBA Finals. The Boston Celtics star assured Kobe Bryant prior to tip-off that he was not going to squander the opportunity.

Tatum shared several photos on Instagram after Boston’s thrilling 100-96 victory. One of them was a screenshot that showed a text message he sent to Bryant before the game. It read “I got you today.”

Tatum also captioned the Instagram post “How much does it mean to you.” That is something Kobe said to him a few years back when the two were training together.

Tatum was among the many who lost a mentor when Bryant tragically died in a helicopter crash over two years ago. Kobe spent a lot of time working with Tatum. The Celtics star even named his puppy after Bryant. He also paid tribute to Kobe with one of his accessories during Game 7.

There are times when Tatum looks like Kobe on the floor. Like Bryant, Tatum can hit shots from anywhere and is not afraid to pull up with a defender in his face. He made some huge baskets late in the fourth quarter on Sunday night. Tatum was obviously motivated in part by his connection with Kobe.

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