Celtics

Hand injuries may be contributing to Jayson Tatum’s underwhelming 3-point shooting stretch

Tatum is shooting just 32.5% from beyond the arc over his last 20 games, but don't expect him to sit out to rest the hand anytime soon.

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Jayson Tatum with tape on his left wrist and thumb. Charles Krupa/AP

Thursday night Jayson Tatum scored 20 points against the Nets, just the sixth time all season he’s been held to 20 or fewer in a contest. His scoring output wasn’t down for a lack of trying either, he put up 22 shots on the night, including 10 from beyond the arc but nothing seemed to fall for the three-time All-Star.

Overall, Tatum shot 32% against Brooklyn with a 20% mark from deep. After the game Tatum noted some issues he has been having with his fingers and wrist on his non-shooting hand, perhaps contributing to the off-shooting night. 

“If you looked at my hand, I had tape on my wrist, tape on my thumb, I had to tape my middle finger and ring finger together, I got a lot of s— going on,” Tatum said. “It was uncomfortable tonight, but I love to play too much to sit out.”

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The game against the Nets wasn’t an outlier however, this season Tatum has struggled as a whole with his shots from range, posting the lowest 3-point percentage of his career at 34.7%.

Since the start of December, that figure is even worse. In the past 20 games, Tatum has shot 32.5% from deep on nine attempts per game. 

Tatum did mention that his hand injuries haven’t just sprung out of nowhere. The finger issues have been lingering and his wrist issue dates back to an injury he suffered in the NBA Finals last year that was reaggravated in the season opener against Philadelphia. 

Since reinjuring his left wrist, Tatum has kept it taped up and he said that only more recently has he required tape on his fingers and thumb. He mentioned that he is still in the process with the team’s physical therapist Nick Sang, of finding the best way possible to tape his fingers to cause the least discomfort.


When asked if these issues have a chance of sidelining him for any of the Celtics’ upcoming games, Tatum said, “that’s something me and Brad will fight about,” and that as long as he feels comfortable to play he’ll play.

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