How Jayson Tatum, Celtics Defended Nikola Jokic In Win Over Nuggets

The Celtics defense continues to step up


The Boston Celtics beat the Denver Nuggets 124-104, and continued to play great defense. When defending the Nuggets, center Nikola Jokic had to be the priority.

The Celtics had a simple yet effective gameplan to defend the MVP.

Jayson Tatum, who had another historical night, was asked how the Celtics defended Jokic after the game.

“We just got to make it tough. Obviously, (Jokic is) the reigning MVP of the league and in the conversation this year so he’s obviously playing well,” Tatum said, as seen on NBC Sports Boston’s postgame coverage. “We just tried to make it tough on him. Great players like that you just can’t let him be comfortable.

“You’re not going to get a stop every time but just make them uncomfortable and compete and that’s what we tried to do.”

On paper, Jokic’s 23 points appear to be solid, just under his season average of 26.1 points-per-game. However, Jokic was only 8-for-23 (34.8%) from the field, which is 22.7% lower than his season average shooting percentage of 55.7.

All the Celtics wanted to do was make Jokic uncomfortable, and they did.

Boston Bruins general manager Don Sweeney
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