Jaylen Brown, Year 7

CreightonGubanich

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Listening to WEEI yesterday (why, I don't know) and they were talking about how JB and JT are incompatible with each other, which is why JB will be gone after this year. I don't know if JB will be gone, but the idea that they're incompatible? Makes no sense.

They've been together since the 2017-18 season.

They've gone to the ECF three times. They've gone to the NBA Finals once. No, they've never won a championship together. But we keep talking about, with regard to Tatum, that even the greats like LeBron, Curry, Giannis, and Jordan didn't win until age 26 or 27, and Tatum is still younger than that.

But Brown is also just 26 right now, younger than LeBron, Curry, and Jordan were when they won their first titles. It feels like he's a grizzled NBA veteran, but he's not. There's no reason why these two can't work well together now or moving forward. Everyone knows you need more than one great player to win it all.
I never understood this idea, even as a hot take talking point. As you point out, the on-court success is there. And their games mesh perfectly. Jaylen Brown is a play finisher, not a play initiator. He needs a primary superstar to take the defenses' attention in order for him to do what he does. Jaylen might not know that, but it doesn't change the fact that it's true. Jayson Tatum is that guy - he has the body type, the handle, the athleticism, everything he needs to be a primary scorer. And they're both really good off the ball, so they're a threat to score when the other guy has the ball. Jaylen in particular has made himself into a really good cutter, and they're both good spot up shooters. Defensively, they both do different things well. Jaylen is best as an on-ball guy, while Tatum is a great help defender and rim protector when he needs to be.

They're, like, exactly how you would draw up two wings that you would want to play together on the same team. There's nothing that one guy doesn't get to do because of the presence of the other one that he should be doing on the basketball court. The entire offense is geared around them, so they both get to shoot as much as they want. They're a much better fit than, say, LeBron and Wade were. Or Durant and Westbrook. Even Steph and Klay, as great as they are/were, some of Klay's off-the-bounce game was shelved because Steph rightly had the ball so much. The entire argument mystifies me.
 

NomarsFool

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I think a lot of it comes from the sort of alpha male mentality of "whose team" it is, and that there is one guy who is the go-to guy, the guy that will take the last shot in the game, or who will take the shot when you absolutely have to get a bucket. Also the idea about who is the emotional, off the court leader.

It's a bunch of nonsense, in my opinion.
 

BaseballJones

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And neither Jaylen nor Tatum really have given even the slightest indication that they're not perfectly fine playing with each other. I've never seen them in any sort of dispute. They seem to like each other and enjoy playing together. Maybe their alpha male egos could get in the way but it hasn't so far.
 

Auger34

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Pretty simple…unfortunately controversy generates clicks and listens. I wouldn’t pay any attention to it, it’s not sourced and it’s likely pulled out of the hosts ass
 

Kliq

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The Celtics could add a third star scoring wing that can defend and they'd still be able to all play together at the same time. Hell, the whole starting five probably could be players like that.
 

lovegtm

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The Celtics could add a third star scoring wing that can defend and they'd still be able to all play together at the same time. Hell, the whole starting five probably could be players like that.
"Brooklyn, but good"
 

HomeRunBaker

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And neither Jaylen nor Tatum really have given even the slightest indication that they're not perfectly fine playing with each other. I've never seen them in any sort of dispute. They seem to like each other and enjoy playing together. Maybe their alpha male egos could get in the way but it hasn't so far.
I questioned this myself last year and prior but they have really developed good chemistry on the client which is very difficult to do when it doesn't occur naturally. Even moreso when you have a supermax contract hanging in the balance. Big props to Jaylen for growing as a player, and a team player, while not succumbing to these pressures.
 

Auger34

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I questioned this myself last year and prior but they have really developed good chemistry on the client which is very difficult to do when it doesn't occur naturally. Even moreso when you have a supermax contract hanging in the balance. Big props to Jaylen for growing as a player, and a team player, while not succumbing to these pressures.
They both seem to have an innate ability to understand when the other is struggling and kick it up a notch. It’s awesome to watch and witness
 

Kliq

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I'll be honest, I like Jaylen Brown more than Tatum. Tatum is obviously a better player and I love him to death, but I enjoy watching Brown more. Tatum is so naturally gifted and he makes complex things, like driving to the basket, taking eurosteps around would-be defenders, and finishing effortlessly with either hand so easy. It's why it sometimes feels like Tatum is disengaged with the game...and then you find out he has like, 25 points through three quarters.

There is something charming about Brown being a more flawed player that I enjoy watching. Everything he does feels like WORK, the aggressive drives to the basket, the explosive first steps to launch into a mid-range jumper, even the tenacity on defense when he locks it; he looks like he is giving more effort than Tatum because he kind of has to because he isn't as naturally talented. That isn't to say Tatum doesn't work just as hard as Brown because I'm sure he does, but the optics are different given the natural ability of Tatum, and the raw, sometimes uncontrolled athleticism of Brown.

I can't stress how cool it was to watch Brown in G2 really try and get a poster on Embiid. He never really succeeded, Embiid blocked him a few times and other times Brown settled for lay-ups. But he was cutting to the basket super hard and wanted to drive the ball right down Philly's throat and that energy was contagious. He was pissed they lost G1, and now Embiid was suiting up in G2 and Brown wasn't having any of it...he came out and said "I'M GOING TO GET YOU MOTHERFUCKERS" and even with his imperfections, it was a joy to watch. Tatum can have that same energy, but it would be more like "I'm going to take a side-step three and hit it in your face" kind of thing.
 

Euclis20

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I think their on-court chemistry has always been fine, if not the optimal combination (ideally for scoring purposes it might be nice if your two best players play different positions, so a simple pick and role can potentially create multiple mismatches). The real advantage of having two two-way big wings is in roster construction and versatility. Literally any all-star level player in the league would fit in really well alongside the Jays, which just isn't the case with Curry/Thompson, Lebron/AD, Embiid/Harden, or really any other duo outside of Kawhi/George. In crunch time, you can surround them with the players that are playing well in that particular game or matchup. This just isn't always the case when one (or both) of your two best players are a giant big, or a small point guard, or are just weak defensively.

*edit - to bring this back to Brown, I don't think Tatum/Brown make each other better, not really (other than Jaylen being guarded by the 2nd best wing defender instead of the best). What they do is make it easier to put quality players around them. Even if their presence doesn't benefit the other directly, it makes the entire team better. That Jaylen has recognized this is a huge credit to him, and hopefully he'll get all-NBA this year because of it.
 

InstaFace

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I'll be honest, I like Jaylen Brown more than Tatum. Tatum is obviously a better player and I love him to death, but I enjoy watching Brown more. Tatum is so naturally gifted and he makes complex things, like driving to the basket, taking eurosteps around would-be defenders, and finishing effortlessly with either hand so easy. It's why it sometimes feels like Tatum is disengaged with the game...and then you find out he has like, 25 points through three quarters.

There is something charming about Brown being a more flawed player that I enjoy watching. Everything he does feels like WORK, the aggressive drives to the basket, the explosive first steps to launch into a mid-range jumper, even the tenacity on defense when he locks it; he looks like he is giving more effort than Tatum because he kind of has to because he isn't as naturally talented. That isn't to say Tatum doesn't work just as hard as Brown because I'm sure he does, but the optics are different given the natural ability of Tatum, and the raw, sometimes uncontrolled athleticism of Brown.

I can't stress how cool it was to watch Brown in G2 really try and get a poster on Embiid. He never really succeeded, Embiid blocked him a few times and other times Brown settled for lay-ups. But he was cutting to the basket super hard and wanted to drive the ball right down Philly's throat and that energy was contagious. He was pissed they lost G1, and now Embiid was suiting up in G2 and Brown wasn't having any of it...he came out and said "I'M GOING TO GET YOU MOTHERFUCKERS" and even with his imperfections, it was a joy to watch. Tatum can have that same energy, but it would be more like "I'm going to take a side-step three and hit it in your face" kind of thing.
Well said. I personally don't enjoy Brown's game as much, because I feel like he makes a bunch of dumb mistakes and steadfastly refuses to take steps to fix them, but that's personal taste at best (and nonsense at worst). But I very much appreciate the dynamic of rooting for someone with less natural talent but who tries just so goddamn hard. I think I characterized the difference in Smart vs Timelord that way in a post a few months ago. TimeLord just feels fundamentally unfair, and watching him can sometimes be unironic-laugh-worthy because these offensive superstars drive and then come face to face with him and go "oh shit" and pass out of it. One or two times a game, he does something no basketball player has any right to do. Whereas Smart's talents just feel more accessible, something that any athletic 6'3" person could do if they'd just work hard enough, and care about every play more than anyone else in the arena... and his struggles feel more relatable.

And I guess I see the parallels to Tatum and Brown. Tatum can juke an MVP / DPOY Embiid out of his shoes and get an and-1 layup. Tatum can dribble through traffic in a way he has absolutely no right to, or finish in a way that nobody saw coming. Brown is more brute force - strength and effort. Of course he has talent, of course he has a shooting touch, of course he works hard. But he has to struggle for it. The sweat pours down his face sooner and harder than it ever will for Tatum (seemingly).

I'm always attracted to the Pedro Martinezes and Gronks and Kevin Garnetts of sports. I feel like sports is a platform for them to shine, for us to behold the extraordinary, the extremes of human ability. Everyone else is there to just give a sufficient baseline of competition for their freak flags to fly high, to force them to try hard.

But you do make a hell of a case in your third paragraph here for admiring the relentlessness, the focus and determination and energy of a guy who is FED THE FUCK UP and not having it anymore. And, yeah, Brown got blocked on that poster dunk (and then fouled on the follow-through in what could've been a headshot flagrant, but whatevs), but later in the game he did indeed get his dunk. And rather than get put on a poster, Embiid or whoever was in the paint made a business decision and got the fuck out of his way. In a way, that's almost more respect, more of a victory, than it would've been to still have Embiid up there contesting his shot like the outcome of the possession mattered. By that point in the game I think the Cs were up 20 and fucks were rapidly starting to no longer be given. Tatum and Embiid might've been chilling on the bench by that point. But out there was Brown, not merely scoring but SHOVING IT IN YOUR FACE. And that's not just fun, but also admirable.
 

chilidawg

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But you do make a hell of a case in your third paragraph here for admiring the relentlessness, the focus and determination and energy of a guy who is FED THE FUCK UP and not having it anymore. And, yeah, Brown got blocked on that poster dunk (and then fouled on the follow-through in what could've been a headshot flagrant, but whatevs), but later in the game he did indeed get his dunk. And rather than get put on a poster, Embiid or whoever was in the paint made a business decision and got the fuck out of his way. In a way, that's almost more respect, more of a victory, than it would've been to still have Embiid up there contesting his shot like the outcome of the possession mattered. By that point in the game I think the Cs were up 20 and fucks were rapidly starting to no longer be given. Tatum and Embiid might've been chilling on the bench by that point. But out there was Brown, not merely scoring but SHOVING IT IN YOUR FACE. And that's not just fun, but also admirable.
Loved this game from Brown, for exactly all the above reasons.
 

Jimbodandy

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Brown continues to add skills to his game after many years in this league. It's a joy to watch him learn and adapt even during the season. Taking on the challenge of bothering Harden, so Marcus doesn't have to do it for 30+ minutes on his own, is a joy to behold. Man is a stud.
 

benhogan

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Brown picking up Harden 3/4s is huge. Completely grinding James down. Jaylen going over or through screens from the top, staying attached, and not switching is where he is at his best defensively.

He'd have to get the Brunson assignment.
 

lovegtm

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Brown picking up Harden 3/4s is huge. Completely grinding James down. Jaylen going over or through screens from the top, staying attached, and not switching is where he is at his best defensively.

He'd have to get the Brunson assignment.
The only thing that gives me pause there is that Brunson is more comfortable than Harden in the midrange/floater area (Harden's G1 notwithstanding). They might want White, who is better at getting through screens and contesting from behind.
 

NomarsFool

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Aesthetically, I just like watching Brown’s game more. He’s a very efficient player who shoots for a high percentage and his game doesn’t rely as much on getting to the FT line, I know that getting to the line is an important part of scoring, but it’s almost like BB in baseball. It’s effective, but BORING. Brown’s turn around mid range jumpers are beautiful, as are his explosive drives to the basket. I also just like his quick catch and shoot 3s. I know Tatum’s side step or step back 3s are difficult and require lots of practice and footwork. I just don’t really like that play aesthetically very much, for whatever reason.
 

RorschachsMask

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Everybody will always have their preferences, that’s just how it is. For me, I prefer the cerebral aspect of Tatum’s game. For the most part, Jaylen is just going to do what he’s going to do. With Tatum, it’s a chess match with the defense, any time he puts the ball down, he knows that there’s going to be at least 2-3 defenders gearing to cut him off or get the ball out of his hands.

Jaylen is a react and do player, and he’s excellent at it. Tatum is more about creating advantages for the offense.
 

Auger34

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Everybody will always have their preferences, that’s just how it is. For me, I prefer the cerebral aspect of Tatum’s game. For the most part, Jaylen is just going to do what he’s going to do. With Tatum, it’s a chess match with the defense, any time he puts the ball down, he knows that there’s going to be at least 2-3 defenders gearing to cut him off or get the ball out of his hands.

Jaylen is a react and do player, and he’s excellent at it. Tatum is more about creating advantages for the offense.
Yeah, this is very fair. I prefer Jaylen mostly just because of his decisiveness.

Also, while he’s worked diligently to get this out of his game, I can’t forget “old Tatum” who played basketball in a style I absolutely fucking hate. Plodding, pounding the air out of the ball and constant ISO jumpers. I am a Duke fan so I witnessed it first hand.

If I took a break from watching basketball and just picked it up this year, I think I sold probably like Tatum more for the reasons you stated but it’s hard for me to completely let go of those old memories
 

benhogan

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The only thing that gives me pause there is that Brunson is more comfortable than Harden in the midrange/floater area (Harden's G1 notwithstanding). They might want White, who is better at getting through screens and contesting from behind.
We're really putting ourselves out there by even talking about Brunson/Knicks, but so be it, willing to take those arrows if it goes pear-shaped ;)

Jaylen switching, off-ball has always been his Achilles' heal, and probably makes him the weakest defender in the starting group. Putting him at the top immediately makes him a plus defender, he really gets to utilize his length/strength on the perimeter, and zero in on one player. Immediate ball pressure has several positive knock-on effects in the half-court.

Brunson plays much like Chris Paul, bullying most PGs with their girth/low center of gravity. Jaylen ends that, and any little separation means that Brunson's step-back fadeaway will be challenged or rim runs will be swatted from behind.

That being said the Knicks play so BIG, you're probably right that White will need to guard Brunson unless CJM goes Double BIG (which we shouldn't expect)
 

Jimbodandy

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If I took a break from watching basketball and just picked it up this year, I think I sold probably like Tatum more for the reasons you stated but it’s hard for me to completely let go of those old memories
Kudos to you for acknowledging this bias. It's refreshing, especially in the Jaylen thread ironically. Plenty of folks on this forum and outside of it who still see Jaylen as the mechanical Bambi from 2016 and can't shake that impression.

That said, I enjoy JB's pure explosiveness as much as or more than JT's otherworldly length and pure shotmaking and footwork. Both deserve credit for developing playmaking, but Tatum much more so. His vision has really leveled up more so that Brown's. But both are looking for teammates now, and that's exactly why they can play effectively together and make their teammates better.
 

Auger34

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Kudos to you for acknowledging this bias. It's refreshing, especially in the Jaylen thread ironically. Plenty of folks on this forum and outside of it who still see Jaylen as the mechanical Bambi from 2016 and can't shake that impression.

That said, I enjoy JB's pure explosiveness as much as or more than JT's otherworldly length and pure shotmaking and footwork. Both deserve credit for developing playmaking, but Tatum much more so. His vision has really leveled up more so that Brown's. But both are looking for teammates now, and that's exactly why they can play effectively together and make their teammates better.
I legitimately really like both players. They both do stuff sometimes thay can drive any of us crazy.

I’m not a contrarian but I also don’t like sacred cows or people refusing to call a spade a spade. I think that there’s a decent amount of people on this board, and in some corners of Celtics twitter, that just refuse to admit that Tatum has any faults or could do anything wrong. It’s honestly kind of maddening. Whereas Brown gets called out for all of his faults and, in a lot of cases, gets more shit than he deserves. Since SoSH is basically my only outlet for my Celtic fandom, that definitely makes me root for and stick up for Brown more
 

RorschachsMask

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I’m not a contrarian but I also don’t like sacred cows or people refusing to call a spade a spade. I think that there’s a decent amount of people on this board, and in some corners of Celtics twitter, that just refuse to admit that Tatum has any faults or could do anything wrong. It’s honestly kind of maddening. Whereas Brown gets called out for all of his faults and, in a lot of cases, gets more shit than he deserves. Since SoSH is basically my only outlet for my Celtic fandom, that definitely makes me root for and stick up for Brown more
I think there definitely used to be more to this, but ever since the KD rumors, I feel it’s kind of gone the other way a bit. At least on Twitter and other forums.

The reality is both players have too many Stan’s, and those people put it before the team lol.
 
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benhogan

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Harden went 3-for-14 in Game 3 after going 2-for-14 in Game 2. It's his worst shooting performance in two consecutive games across his entire NBA career, including both the regular season and playoffs.

I'm really curious to see how today goes, this could be more than Playoff James.
 

tims4wins

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Harden went 3-for-14 in Game 3 after going 2-for-14 in Game 2. It's his worst shooting performance in two consecutive games across his entire NBA career, including both the regular season and playoffs.

I'm really curious to see how today goes, this could be more than Playoff James.
Right and there is only what, ~41 hours between the end of game 3 and the start of game 4?
 

benhogan

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Right and there is only what, ~41 hours between the end of game 3 and the start of game 4?
I think it may be more of a Jaylen Brown problem than a shooting slump

We'll see if JB's length, incessant on-ball pressure & ball denial still bothers James over the next few games.
 

HomeRunBaker

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I think it may be more of a Jaylen Brown problem than a shooting slump

We'll see if JB's length, incessant on-ball pressure & ball denial still bothers James over the next few games.
Meh. Jaylen did a great job but Harden had one flashback game over the last 6-8 weeks and that was G1 vs Nets which also was following a prolong break. He's a shell of what he was earlier in the year before the injuries began piling up.
 

RorschachsMask

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I think it’s both TBH, which seems like a copout lol. Jaylen has definitely stepped up his effort defensively the last two games, but like I said after game 1, Harden had somewhat of a fluke performance, going 13-22 (7-12) on tight contested shots, according to nba.com.
 

HomeRunBaker

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I think it’s both TBH, which seems like a copout lol. Jaylen has definitely stepped up his effort defensively the last two games, but like I said after game 1, Harden had somewhat of a fluke performance, going 13-22 (7-12) on tight contested shots, according to nba.com.
I agree that is was a combination. I also feel we could have not made any adjustments and Harden would still have not responded well to his monster G1.
 

Jed Zeppelin

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Even if it hadn’t directly affected Harden’s performance the more aggressive D would be worth it to me. They’re a different defense and team when they are fully engaged on the perimeter and committed to pressuring the ballhandler all over the half court.
 

benhogan

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I agree that is was a combination. I also feel we could have not made any adjustments and Harden would still have not responded well to his monster G1.
Combo sounds about right, BUT there is off & bad, and then there is what Jaylen has done to that Harden carcass the last 2 games.

James is the head of that 76ers snake, and his bad body language infects the entire team.
Just continue to harass him over 94 feet & face guard/deny him the ball.
 

Reverend

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It’s been mentioned before that, for obvious reasons, not every journalist or commentator can watch every game of the regular season (in most sports) and how that can be problematic when and if they are tasked with voting for awards. Obviously, All-NBA Teams are regular season awards, but I’ve been wondering if some of the people who didn’t vote for Jaylen are having, “Oh, that’s what Jaylen Brown is.”
 

NomarsFool

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It’s been weirdly consistent lately that it seems like Jaylen gets off to an amazing start with double digit points in the first quarter and then we seem to hardly hear from him the rest of the game. Meanwhile, Tatum has been garbage in the first quarter and then comes back with an epic performance in the second half.
 

BaseballJones

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1st Team NBA, 2nd Team NBA, 6th Man of the Year…please win this series.
Team A:
- 1st team all NBA
- 2nd team all NBA
- 6th man of the year
- former DPOY
- rookie coach thrown into the fire
- home court advantage

Team B:
- NBA MVP (and obviously 1st team all NBA)
- former NBA MVP and 7x all NBA player
- head coach with far more experience, who's won an NBA title

If you were just looking at those resumés and didn't have any names attached, which team should win?
 

Auger34

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Team A:
- 1st team all NBA
- 2nd team all NBA
- 6th man of the year
- former DPOY
- rookie coach thrown into the fire
- home court advantage

Team B:
- NBA MVP (and obviously 1st team all NBA)
- former NBA MVP and 7x all NBA player
- head coach with far more experience, who's won an NBA title

If you were just looking at those resumés and didn't have any names attached, which team should win?
Should include that the MVP (supposedly) has a Grade 2 Knee Sprain
 

Auger34

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Hard to say. We don’t know how serious either injury is.
That’s a very fair point. Doc has certainly complained about Embiid’s injury more and it’s got way more press but…Doc always complains and Embiid seems to have turned into a media darling.
 

lovegtm

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Is it just me, or has Jaylen's 3-ball looked less line-drivey in the playoffs? He seems to have more arc back on it of late.
 

Auger34

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Is it just me, or has Jaylen's 3-ball looked less line-drivey in the playoffs? He seems to have more arc back on it of late.
I noticed this exact same thing!

when he was struggling at the end of the regular season this year, his 3 ball didn’t have much arc at all. It didn’t look like he was using his legs enough and the ball had almost a Kawhi like arc…

Thats changed in the playoffs. He’s using his legs more for lift and the shot has more arc and a better looking trajectory.