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Jayson Tatum out vs. Clippers with shoulder soreness

Jayson Tatum, Celtics

The Boston Celtics will be taking on the Los Angeles Clippers without young forward Jayson Tatum, who is dealing with shoulder soreness, the team announced.

The Celtics have plenty of talent on their team to cover Tatum’s absence, so it makes sense not to push him. With playoffs right around the corner, it’s best to allow his shoulder to heal.

This is bad news for the Celtics, sure, but it is also bad news for the Clippers. Right now, Los Angeles is sitting in eighth place in the Western Conference. They are a full four games ahead of the Sacramento Kings.

The Clippers have clear reason to want to drop out of the playoff picture. If they miss the playoffs, they get their first-round pick this year. On the flip side, if they make the playoffs, their protection is void and the pick goes to, in all irony, the Celtics.

This is a fun situation where a loss for either team helps their draft status one way or another. Of course, just losing Tatum for the game is not enough to make Boston an underdog in the upcoming game.

Tatum is providing 16.1 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 1.9 assists per game to the Celtics right now. At only 21 years old, he is one of the more exciting young players in the league.

Moving forward, Tatum will be listed as day-to-day.

The Celtics will not push Tatum to play, choosing instead to ensure he is healthy enough for the playoffs. Their position is not in much question, so they would be shortsighted to risk a more serious injury for a few games in the regular season.