Jayson Tatum is determined to shoot more three-pointers, layups and free-throws in 2019-20.
Which has to be music to Boston Celtics fans’ ears, who grew irritated with the 21-year-old’s poor mimicry of Kobe Bryant‘s mid-range brilliance last season.
Tatum says he has come to realize that he was “making the game tougher” that it needed to be during a disappointing second-year in the NBA.
“[I was] making the game tougher than I probably should have,” Tatum said last week.
He’d dribble into difficult midrange shots, including fadeaways. Those were shots Kobe Bryant, who worked with Tatum in the summer of 2018, made a living taking — and making. But the NBA has since evolved into a league hyper-focused on shots at the rim and beyond the arc — and, last year, Tatum didn’t take enough of either.
“Last year was kind of funky in all aspects,” Tatum said. “I understand that. I acknowledge that, and I’m just trying to be better this year.”
His struggles offered Tatum a vision of what he needed to do to take his game to another level.
“Focus on getting to the basket much more,” Tatum said. “Shoot more 3s, and layups, and free throws.”