I know there’s a major size difference here, but you can’t deny the highlight of this block.
As the Boston Celtics engaged in a battle with the Toronto Raptors for Eastern Conference supremacy, the 6-foot-8 Jayson Tatum just erased 6-footer Fred VanVleet’s shot with this amazing chasedown block:
— NBA (@NBA) October 20, 2018
It’s no secret that Tatum trained with Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant during the offseason. This is what Tatum had to say in regard to what he learned from the five-time NBA champion as he picked his brain, via Jake Fischer of Sports Illustrated:
“The overall experience of interacting with him on a personal level—he’s my all-time favorite player—that really meant a lot to me. There were a few things he showed here and there that can help make it easier for me. But just being around him. His mindset that he had going into each year, just to always improve and not backtrack and get better each season as he wanted to continue to grow as a player.”
Tatum averaged 13.9 points and 5.0 rebounds per game during the 2017-18 regular season, but he upped his game during the playoffs, as he led the Celtics in scoring with 18.5 points per game. He’s already off to a fast start to the 2018-19 season, posting 23 points and nine boards during the team’s victory over the Philadelphia 76ers in the season opener.
Tatum has nine points and five rebounds as the Celtics lead the Raptors 53-49 at halftime.