“I Was a Shell of Myself”: Jayson Tatum Says Ankle Injury Affected His Game 7 Performance

“I Was a Shell of Myself”: Jayson Tatum Says Ankle Injury Affected His Game 7 Performance

Edwin Kiplagat
May 30, 2023 at 12:49 PM
  • Jayson Tatum injured his ankle in the first play of Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals
  • The Boston Celtics superstar played 42 minutes but struggled to make an impact on the game
  • Tatum scored 14 points as his team bowed out of the NBA playoffs against the Miami Heat

The Boston Celtics' wild season is over. They were crushed 103-84 by the Miami Heat in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Celtics superstar, Jayson Tatum's ankle injury early in the game significantly affected his performance.

Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Joe Mazzulla, NBA, Celtics, Miami Heat, Erik Spoelstra, Jimmy Butler, Gabe Vincent, Caleb Martin, Bam Adebayo
Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics grabs his ankle during the first quarter against the Miami Heat. Photo by Maddie Meyer.
Source: Getty Images

The 25-year-old rolled his ankle after only 30 seconds. The four-time All-Star stayed in the game, but it was clear he was playing through an injury. He played 42 minutes and finished with 14 points on 5-for-13.

Tatum's injury affected the team greatly since he is their best player. His teammates failed to step up and scored only 84 points.

The 17-time NBA champions struggled all night. They shot 39 percent from the field (9-42 from 3).

Jaylen Brown, who many expected to step up after Tatum's injury, was poor. He had 19 points on 8-for-23 shooting, including 1-of-9 from deep, to go along with 8 turnovers, per ESPN.

Tatum addresses ankle injury

Tatum was frustrated after his team bowed out and addressed the injury.

"I saw the video after the game that I came down on my ankle. And that's tough, because it kind of impacted me the rest of the night. It swelled up and it was just frustrating that I was kind of a shell of myself. It was tough to move. It was just frustrating, especially that it happened on the first play," he said, via NBC Sports.

It was an anticlimactic ending to their season after erasing a 0-3 deficit against the Heat. They had a chance to become the first team in NBA history to overcome such a big margin.

Miami have plenty of questions to answer in the offseason. Many Celtics fans have expressed their concerns about Joe Mazzulla and his ability; Brown is eligible to sign a five-year, $295 million supermax extension this summer after making second-team All-NBA.

The Celtics were torched by Caleb Martin and conference finals MVP, Jimmy Butler, who combined for 54 points.

NBA Twitter blasts Brown

Sports Brief has also reported on NBA Twitter slamming Jaylen Brown for his underwhelming performance during Game 7.

With Tatum injured and less than 100%, the onus was on Brown to carry the load for the Celtics in the do-or-die contest.

Edwin Kiplagat photo
Edwin Kiplagat
Editor- Other Sports