Tatum Buoyed by Celtics Playoffs Fightbacks: NBA Finals 'Not Over With'
NBA star Jayson Tatum of Boston Celtics — Photo by ChinaImages

Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum is leaning on his side’s ability to respond from tough situations this postseason to fuel his optimism ahead of Game 6 of the NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors.

The Warriors claimed a 3-2 NBA Finals series lead with a 104-94 win over the Celtics on Monday, with the two sides to meet in Boston on Thursday with Golden State a win away from the title.

The Celtics, however, trailed 3-2 in the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals against reigning champions Milwaukee Bucks earlier in these playoffs and bounced back to progress.

Boston won 108-95 in Milwaukee before triumphing 109-81 at the TD Garden to secure a 4-3 series win.

They were also pushed to Game 7 against the Miami Heat in the Conference Finals but held their nerve again.

“It’s not over with. As long as it’s not over with, you’ve got a chance,” Tatum told reporters on Wednesday.

“Having done it before should give you even more confidence that you can, not that it’s going to be easy or given to us, but you should be extremely confident as long as you’ve got a chance and we’ve got a chance tomorrow.”

He added: “It hasn’t been easy. It’s been extremely tough. We’ve had some tough losses. Losing Game 5 against Milwaukee was extremely tough. Knowing we had to win two, go on the road.

“Losing Game 6 against the Heat was extremely tough. In those moments, we just responded. I don’t know exactly what it is, but I think just our will to want to win, just trying to figure it out.”

Celtics head coach Ime Udoka has also identified his side’s issue with turnovers, calling for better ball retention. The Celtics gave up 18-6 turnovers in Game 6.

“We’re defending well enough to win,” Udoka said. “It’s really some stagnant lulls offensively that have really hurt us.

“We’ll have a quarter or two or three of really good basketball, then have that quarter or two that really have hurt us. That was the fourth quarter a few games ago.”

Ben somerford
Sports Pundit staff writer @bensomerford
Australian journalist who specialises on all sports, focusing on football, tennis, basketball and racing, having written for global publications including FourFourTwo, AAP, Inside Futbol and many more....

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