BOSTON -- While no official word has been given, all signs point toward Jayson Tatum returning to the Boston Celtics lineup after missing one game due to a right shoulder injury.
The 6-foot-9 forward, the team’s No. 2 scorer this season at 16.1 points per game, did not play in Boston’s 140-115 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday.
“The shoulder feels good,” Tatum said. “I had a chance to practice today. Hopefully it feels the same tomorrow and I play.”
The second-year forward has played in all but three games for Boston, but the Clippers game was the first he missed due to injury.
“It was a lingering thing,” Tatum said. “It gave me a couple extra days of rest and treatment.”
Having a healthy Tatum is good not only for this stretch run to close out the season, but also for Boston heading into the playoffs, which is when we saw Tatum at his best last season.
After averaging 13.1 points during the regular season, Tatum became Boston’s go-to guy in the postseason with a team-best 18.5 points per game.
And while the Celtics will have their leading scorer Kyrie Irving around for this postseason this time around, Irving has made no secret about how he feels one of the keys to Boston’s postseason run this year will be the play of Tatum.
On Thursday, Boston returns home to face the Sacramento Kings, one of the teams Boston beat during its recently-completed West Coast trip in which the Celtics went 3-1.
That trip has created increased optimism about the Celtics finishing out the regular season playing well, which they believe will set the table for a long postseason journey.
“We wanted to go out there and win every game; 3-1 isn’t bad,” Tatum said. “We’re feeling good about ourselves. Hopefully we can keep it up.”
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