BOSTON (CBS) — Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown were both solid in their first All-Star Game together on Sunday night, something Celtics fans should get used to seeing. The pair of Boston stars did not disappoint in Atlanta, combining for 43 points and several highlight plays on opposite ends in the exhibition.
Tatum, appearing in his second straight All-Star Game, scored 21 points in his 17 minutes of action as a starter for “Team Durant.” He hit nine of his 16 shots from the floor while also dishing out seven assists and pulling down four rebounds. He added four steals on the defensive end.READ MORE: Mass. To Receive Significantly Less Johnson & Johnson COVID Vaccine Doses Next Week
Brown was feeling it in his All-Star debut, scoring 22 points over 26 minutes for the victorious “Team LeBron.” He was wildly efficient playing in front of family and friends in his hometown, hitting eight of his 12 shots and five of seven from three-point range. Brown helped “Team LeBron” pull away late in the third quarter when he hit a ridiculous turnaround three over New York Knicks forward Julius Randle from the corner.
— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) March 8, 2021
Early in the final frame, Brown converted a four-point play when he was fouled while sinking a triple. The moment ended up being one that Brown shared with his family, which was in attendance at State Farm Arena in Atlanta.
It turns out that it wasn’t any of Brown’s teammates that ran over to pick him up off the floor, but Brown’s own brother.
“I got fouled on the three and my brother came and picked me up,” explained Brown. “I know that’s something my family – that is a moment right there we’re never going to forget. When a family member falls down, you got to be there to pick him up. My brother ran on the court and picked me up.”
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Brown’s mother and grandfather — a cancer survivor who also trains Jaylen during the off-season — were also in attendance.
“That was a great family moment for us,” he said.READ MORE: Dorchester Grandmother Killed In Shooting While Sitting On Her Front Porch
There was a funny moment early in the second quarter when Tatum ended up guarding Brown at the top of the key. Tatum slapped the floor before Brown did some dancing around and drove on his Boston teammate. Brown didn’t finish the layup, but got a whistle from officials.
Jaylen Brown vs. Jayson Tatum and Tatum is slapping the floor lol pic.twitter.com/21JKQHSEWR
— Chris Grenham (@chrisgrenham) March 8, 2021
“He fouled me when he was on me. We knew how that was going to go,” Brown joked after the game.
But Tatum gave a much different recollection of the play.
“No, I didn’t,” Tatum said of fouling Brown. “I was playing defense and then he got to the layup and I was about to move out the way. But we’re in Atlanta, so they gave him the foul.”
Brown’s “Team LeBron” won the game 170-150 with Giannis Antetokounmpo (who hit all 16 of his shots for a game-high 35 points) taking home Kobe Bryant MVP honors.
“I was talking to LeBron a lot on the bench and asking him questions, probably being annoying,” said Brown. “But I’m learning something and trying to pick up some information and some knowledge.”
Both players also took part in the three-point contest prior to the All-Star game. Brown tallied just 17 points in the first round, while Tatum advanced to the Finals with an impressive 25 points in the opening round. Tatum had just 17 points in the second round though, finishing third behind Utah’s Mike Conley and winner Steph Curry.
Overall, it was an unforgettable night for Boston’s two stars, who hope to make All-Star appearances a yearly tradition.
“Honestly, it was more fun than I thought it would be,” Tatum said of the unusual environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “I had a blast.”MORE NEWS: Coronavirus In Massachusetts: Today's Developments
“I couldn’t ask for nothing more,” Brown said of making his All-Star debut in his hometown. “I had a great time.”