Jayson Tatum is the fifth Boston Celtics player in franchise history to score 25 or more points in each of his first three games of a single postseason, and the four-time All-Star is the first since Paul Pierce in 2002.
In Boston’s 130-122 first-round loss to the Atlanta Hawks in Game 3 of the 2023 NBA Playoffs, Tatum ended his outing with 29 points, 10 rebounds, five assists, and two steals in 41 minutes of action.
According to a few NBA betting sites, Jayson Tatum and the Celtics have second-shortest odds to win the championship, trailing only the Milwaukee Bucks.
Jayson Tatum is the 5th player in Celtics history to score 25+ points in each of the Celtics’ first 3 games of a postseason, and the first since Paul Pierce in 2002. pic.twitter.com/YmYp0NBa82
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 22, 2023
““I have to play better, I think,” Jayson Tatum said. “I had some timely turnovers, especially some reads at the rim. Maybe try and get fouled where I have to do a better job of making the decisions in some of those moments just in timely situations. So, this one tonight is on me.”
Atlanta outscored the Celtics 74-67 in the first half. Trae Young and Dejounte Murray became the first pair of Hawks teammates to each have 25 points, five rebounds, and five assists in the same playoff game since Lenny Wilkins and Bill Bridges in 1966.
Jayson Tatum becomes fifth Celtics player to score at least 25 points in his first three games of a postseason, first since Paul Pierce in 2002
Furthermore, the Hawks put up their most points in a playoff game since a 137-125 victory over Detroit in an opening-round series in 1986. They also had seven players in double figures, matching their franchise high in the postseason. Not to mention, it was their first win over Boston this season. The Hawks lost all three regular-season meetings.
“I know I get a lot of credit when we win, and I have to take the blame when we lose,” Jayson Tatum added. “Rightfully so, and gotta play better. Gotta make some better decisions in some of those moments. I will.”
More importantly, the Celtics are the first team in NBA Playoffs history to hit 15 3-pointers in a first half and trail at halftime. Boston is also the second team over the past 25 seasons to make at least 15 3-pointers in the first half of a game and face a deficit at halftime.
“I get a lot of credit when we win and I have to take the blame when we lose, rightfully so.”
Jayson Tatum talks loss to Hawks and how he feels about his game pic.twitter.com/dj9hjncPgH
— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) April 22, 2023
Prior to Game 3, the Dallas Mavericks were the last team to accomplish this feat during the regular season on Dec. 28, 2019, against the Golden State Warriors.
The Celtics are now preparing for Game 4, which is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET this Sunday at State Farm Arena. Boston leads 2-1 in this first-round series, so tomorrow’s contest will help bettors determine which team is more likely to advance to the next round.
Per ESPN’s Basketball Power Index, the Celtics have a 73.6% chance of winning Game 4 away. Sportsbooks show Boston as a six-point favorite over Atlanta. However, Jayson Tatum will probably have to score at least 25 points once again for the C’s to steal one on the road.