Jayson Tatum accepted responsibility for the Celtics’ disappointing defeat to the Houston Rockets on Monday night.
The Celtics never really got going as they were outworked in just about every facet of basketball by the league-worst Rockets who ended up winning 111-109. It was another bad loss for Boston with Tatum notably opening the game at just 1-for-9 and scoring 22 points on 21 field goal attempts.
The 25-year-old also missed a crucial game-tying layup at the buzzer which only further compounded the misery for Boston. Speaking to reporters after the game, Tatum took responsibility for the slow start as he felt his poor night spread to the rest of the team.
“We picked it up kind of too late,” Tatum said (via Mass Live). “And I take the blame for that. I know I didn’t necessarily start the best and I feel like that kind of spread throughout the team.
“…We kind of played with the game and tried to win at the end instead of playing how we’re supposed to play the entire game from start to finish.”
With the current No. 1 seed Milwaukee Bucks beating the Sacramento Kings on Monday night, the Celtics are now 2.5 games behind in the Eastern Conference with four tricky road trips still coming up before they play on home court again.
And with the Philadephia 76ers looking red-hot and just one game behind, the Celtics may have to start worrying about keeping their No. 2 spot instead of overtaking the Bucks.