Celtics’ Jayson Tatum Gives His Side Of Costly Technical Foul In Game 5

Tatum's technical came with 1:39 left


Apr 26, 2023

BOSTON — Jayson Tatum on Tuesday didn’t think much of lightly sending away a Trae Young shot following a whistle since it’s a routine action the Boston Celtics star and other NBA players carry out during the season.

But in a pivotal moment during a stunning collapse for the Celtics to the Atlanta Hawks in Game 5 at TD Garden, Tatum’s swat proved costly.

Tatum was assessed a technical foul for his ill-timed rejection with 1:39 remaining, which seemed to astonish the All-Star forward even following the stinging 119-117 defeat.

“You all see it all the time in the regular season after the whistle, guys shoot after the (whistle), guys block the shot after the whistle all the time,” Tatum said. “I wasn’t mad or anything. I just was doing something that I would normally do in the regular season that kind of happens all the time. But I guess he didn’t see it that way.”

Tatum wasn’t the primary defender on Young on the play as Al Horford fouled Young while he was in the act of shooting during a baseline drive. Once he felt contact, Young flipped up a shot toward the hoop that was well short and Tatum harmlessly sent the ball out of bounds.

But the referee handed out a technical to Tatum, giving Young three free throws, which he cashed in to put the Hawks in front by a single point and give them their first lead since early in the second quarter.

The extra point gifted to the Hawks could have been even more problematic had Young not stepped up again and drained a 30-foot 3-pointer with 2.1 seconds left to deliver a two-point win for Atlanta.

While it certainly can be debated if Tatum deserved a technical in that situation, his lack of restraint in that crucial moment further displayed the lack of poise the Celtics exhibited as they crumbled in the final minutes against the Hawks.

Thumbnail photo via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports Images
Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young and Boston Celtics forward Jaylen Brown
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