Jayson Tatum has been named the NBA’s Player of the Month for November 2022 in the Eastern Conference. Tatum has been playing at an MVP level consistently, and he’s lead Boston to the top record in the league at 18-4. Devin Booker earned the award for the Western Conference.
Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker and Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum have been named the Kia NBA Western and Eastern Conference Players of the Month, respectively, for games played in October/November. pic.twitter.com/vpDyqv6pv9— NBA Communications (@NBAPR) December 1, 2022
Since the season started, Jayson Tatum has been unconscious scoring at all levels. On top of that, he’s been stellar defensively, putting in a two-way effort that has helped Boston to propel itself past controversy and into continued contention after a Finals run last year. Tatum entered the season discussing his disappointment at his performance in last year’s Finals, letting us know that he wanted to perform at a higher level starting the season.
It’s safe to say he’s done just that.
Tatum’s career arc has demonstrated similar patterns. He typically starts the year cold from the field (last year’s season opener being the best example of this) before playing his way into his normal standard of excellence by January. By February, we look at him thinking, “this guy is the second coming of Larry Bird.”
The difference this year as he’s averaged 31.6 points, 7.8 rebounds and 4.5 assists is that he’s playing like the second coming of Larry Bird right from the start. Tatum made plenty of changes over the summer to his habits and dieting after the disappointment of the Finals loss, and it’s paying immediate dividends.
Tatum is putting in a stretch of games that’s hard to comprehend at times (much like Boston’s overall dominance). The hope is that he can sustain this play more or less as the season progresses. Even more than that, Celtics fans would love to see this level of player on display in June.
By everything he’s said and done in the last two months, it’s clear that Tatum has the same goal.
Boston will take on the Miami Heat yet again tomorrow evening to follow Tatum’s 49-point, 11-rebound performance to close out November.