Celtics Rookie Jayson Tatum Gave Us An Early Contender For Dunk Of The Year

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The Boston Celtics made two massive moves this offseason when they traded for Kyrie Irving and signed Gordon Hayward in free agency. With all of the hype that followed that pair to Boston, it could have been easy to forget that the Celtics also added a top-3 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft.

Early on in his career, Jayson Tatum has looked solid. He hasn’t been a younger Carmelo Anthony or anything like that, but he has shown off the ability to hit jumpers while highlighting a skilled, savvy game that is unusual for a player who is three games into being a professional.

To start the fourth game of his career — a matchup with the New York Knicks — Tatum thought it would be fun to bring the thunder and give us a candidate for dunk of the year.

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Aron Baynes attempted a bank shot, missed, and Tim Hardaway Jr. thought he’d get an easy rebound to trigger a fast break. Tatum had other ideas, as he flew in, grabbed the ball with one hand, and yammed while he was drifting away from the rim. The most impressive part be that Tatum was standing at the three-point line when the shot left Baynes’ hands.

Tatum has always been something of an underrated athlete, so it’s not a massive surprise that he has something like this in his bag of tricks. But if you ask Hardaway about this, he would probably admit that he didn’t see this coming.