In a nail-biting Game 7, the Boston Celtics edged out the Toronto Raptors to make their third Conference Finals appearance in four years.
There were a number of key plays down the stretch that helped the Celtics ice the game. Jayson Tatum's offensive rebound after rookie Grant Williams missed the second of his two attempts was one of them. The 22-year-old was then fouled and calmly knocked down a pair of crucial free-throws.
Tatum led both teams with 29 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists in 44 minutes of playing time.
🔥 @jaytatum0 comes up HUGE in GAME 7! 🔥- NBA (@NBA) September 12, 2020
29 PTS | 12 REB | 7 AST | 4 3PM
ECF begin Tues. (9/15) on ESPN pic.twitter.com/ftHiZw88cb
It marked Tatum's fourth 20-10 game of the 2020 postseason and the second consecutive game with at least 29 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists, having recorded 29/14/9 in Game 6.
"He's a superstar," Celtics guard Kemba Walker said of Tatum postgame. "He showed it tonight. Anybody who doubted it? He showed it tonight."
Those figures helped Tatum become the second-youngest player ever and the first since Kobe Bryant (2000) with at least 25 points, 10 rebounds and five assists in a Game 7.
"That's great company to be in," Tatum said in his postgame interview with TNT's Inside the NBA panelists.
"Everybody knows how much he meant to myself, how much he meant to this world, to the game of basketball."@jaytatum0 became the first player with 25+ PTS, 10+ REB & 5+ AST in a Game 7 since Kobe. pic.twitter.com/SDurVO7MwC- NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) September 12, 2020
That's not the only all-time company he joined: Tatum became the fifth player in NBA history to have at least 29 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists in a Game 7 win, joining Larry Bird, James Worthy, Elgin Baylor and LeBron James.
Jayson Tatum is the 3rd player in NBA history to lead both teams outright in points, rebounds and assists in a Game 7, joining LeBron James (2018 Conf. Semis) and Larry Bird (1984 Conf. Semis).- ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) September 12, 2020
h/t @EliasSports pic.twitter.com/iIeUOepMEx
In just his third season in the NBA, Tatum will make his second Conference Finals appearance. The Celtics lost the 2018 Conference Finals against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in seven games.
What will happen this time against the Jimmy Butler-led Miami Heat? Both teams suit up for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Tuesday, September 15.
The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA or its clubs.