How Jayson Tatum Supports Jaylen Brown When Fellow Celtics Star Struggles

Brown has endured a frustrating start to the season

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Jayson Tatum won’t allow Jaylen Brown to walk the full road to recovery alone.

Tatum revealed to reporters Wednesday night what he says to Brown when his fellow Boston Celtics star struggles on the court. Tatum had to support Brown during the Celtics’ 88-87 win over the Philadelphia 76ers at TD Garden. The latter scored just nine points on 3-for-11 shooting in 33 minutes, an off night by his lofty standards.

“Keep your head up,” Tatum responded when asked what he tells Brown when he’s struggling, per MassLive’s Souichi Terada. “There’s times when I’m down, and he sees it and he sees when I’m down, because I know how hard he works and how bad he wants it, and having COVID and the hamstring injury and trying to come back.”

Brown’s stop-start season includes a bout with COVID-19, which hampered him in the opening weeks and the subsequent hamstring injury, which sidelined him for eight games last month.

Instead of taking it upon himself to ease Brown’s burden during those off nights, Tatum chooses to support his teammate because he recognizes “we’re at our best when he’s the best version of Jaylen Brown. … Sometimes guys need to be reminded of that.”

Nevertheless, Tatum is aware Brown will have good days and bad days, as he attempts to regain his rhythm this season. Perhaps that’s why the two-time All-Star focuses on the big picture during his conversations with Brown.

“I know how tough it can be and how bad you want something and how it may not be going that way at that moment, and how frustrating it can be,” Tatum said. “But you still trying to find a way to win. We’re all human. We get down on ourselves sometimes and when you see that, tell him it’s gonna be alright. Still be him.”

The Celtics have won three of their five games since Brown returned to action. Should he stay healthy, they likely will continue to win more than they lose in the long run.

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