Tatum reveals he played in Finals due to a broken wrist

Tatum reveals he played in Finals due to a broken wrist

By his standards, Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum had a disappointing NBA Finals against the Warriors.

Tatum, the Celtics’ top scorer during the 2021-22 regular season, struggled at times against the Warriors in the six-game streak. The three-time NBA All-Star averaged 21.5 points in the finals, second to Jaylen Brown with 23.5 points.

More than two months after the Warriors won the NBA Championship at TD Garden, Tatum revealed that he played the entire playoffs through injury.

“It showed I had a non-displaced fracture in my… [left] wrist,” Tatum told Taylor Rooks of Bleacher Report during a live interview on Sunday.

“An undisplaced chip, so like I broke off a bone, but it didn’t come off the surface, right? But it showed that the bone had grown over it, so it was healed, but… I was still in pain because I kept getting hit or fell on it. So I think I played with a fracture for about two months.”

Tatum, who shot 45.3 percent of the field during the 2021-22 regular season, saw that number drop to 36.7 percent during the six games against the Warriors. In the final game of the series, Tatum managed to score just 13 points on 6-for-18 shooting from the field.

Tatum admitted to aggravating the injury during the playoffs but received treatment to continue playing.

“And in the playoffs, there was a game against Milwaukee in Game 3,” Tatum told Rooks. “I dipped it. Giannis [Antetokounmpo] chased me and made me dirty and I fell into the crowd. And that was the most painful thing since the day I hurt. And finally I get a cortisone shot in my wrist that night and you can see it. I have lost color in my hand because it kills the fat cells and there is not much fat in my hand so I lost color there.

“But after every game I had to wear a brace to shoot around, and I would take it off before the cameras saw me. And then pregame, take my nap and put it back on, just to make sure it was stable.”

It’s unclear if Tatum had any sort of procedure on his wrist this off-season.

At that point in the season, most players deal with some sort of injury. For what it’s worth, Steph Curry sustained a foot injury during Game 3 of the Finals. He starred in Game 4 and was the author of one of the most iconic performances of his career, scoring a game-high 43 points to prevent the Warriors from falling into a three-games-to-one-hole. In fact, with the series, Golden State won the next two games to capture its fourth NBA title in eight seasons.

RELATED: Tatum Was “Missing” After Losing Celtics Finals

Tatum, 24, is one of the best young players in the NBA and there is no doubt that he will be healthy when the 2022-23 NBA season kicks off in mid-October.

With both the Warriors and Celtics bringing back rosters that are largely the same as last year, there’s a good chance they could meet again next July in the final, giving Tatum a chance to redeem himself.

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