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Celtics’ Jayson Tatum explains why he won’t be in H-O-R-S-E competition

Jayson Tatum, Celtics

Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum has turned down the opportunity to take part in the NBA’s rumored H-O-R-S-E competition, noting it would be “a lot easier” to do it if he had a basketball court in his place but “that’s kind of expensive,” according to Jay King of The Athletic.

While that is surely understandable, considering participants will be shooting remotely from their homes, it raises the question of how are other stars doing it?

Players like Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook, Donovan Mitchell, and Zion Williamson were rumored to potentially take part in the competition, according to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post.

Paul and Westbrook have amassed some decent wealth after playing in the league for 10-plus years. Yet Mitchell and Williamson are both on rookie contracts and one could imagine that a basketball court was not among their first priority in their first home.

Tatum is making a sound $7.8 million in his third year in the league thanks to being selected with the No. 3 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. He’s in line for a major extension this offseason, but regardless of his earnings, he would be hard-pressed to get a basketball court built in these coronavirus pandemic circumstances.

Many NBA players have workout equipment somewhere at home, but building a basketball court requires space and some hefty landscaping to bring to fruition. Those details normally don’t come until a player has scored his first substantial deal.

It’s a shame the Celtics youngster won’t be participating considering how well he has shot the ball this season, but it seems the 22-year-old is out for this competition after all.

Tatum donated $250,000 each to the cities of Boston and St. Louis in a recent partnership with hometown friend Bradley Beal and Feeding America, a gesture that won’t be forgotten.