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Jayson Tatum has continued his impressive rookie season into the playoffs.

Duke in the NBA: Tatum exerting dominance in his first postseason



As the second round of the NBA Playoffs continues, the Blue Zone examines the performance of three former Blue Devils.

Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics 

With Boston’s leading scorer Kyrie Irving sidelined with a knee injury, Tatum has been forced into a leading role for the team. The Duke product has the highest playoffs usage percentage among Celtics who have logged 100 or more minutes at 24.5 percent. 

Tatum has grown into this more substantial role as the playoffs have progressed. In Boston’s seven-game series victory over the Milwaukee Bucks, he scored just 15.4 points per game on a .402 field goal percentage. Through the first four games of the Celtics’ series against the Philadelphia 76ers, the 20-year-old has been magnificent, tallying 23.3 points per game on a .524 field goal percentage. Tatum’s willingness to go inside and draw contact—he is averaging a team-best 6.5 free-throw attempts per game in the second round—has helped to give Boston a 3-1 series lead.

Rodney Hood, Cleveland Cavaliers

One of the Cavaliers’ many midseason acquisitions, Hood has been very disappointing for Cleveland. The 6’7” shooting guard has apparently fallen out of favor with head coach Tyronn Lue and scored just 2 points total in the Cavaliers’ sweep over the Toronto Raptors. 

Hood reportedly refused to enter the game in the fourth quarter of Game 4, which resulted in a 128-93 Cleveland win. Rumors of a possible suspension for Hood cast an ugly shadow over the Cavaliers’ impressive series.

J.J. Redick, Philadelphia 76ers

Redick’s excellent season has continued into the 76ers’ postseason run. The Duke graduate leads his team in both offensive box plus/minus and total points in the playoffs. Unfortunately, "The Process'" magical run seems to be grinding to a halt, as Philadelphia currently trails Boston in the series 3-1.

Perhaps Redick, who has been prominent in the media with The J.J. Redick Podcast, will welcome a potential early exit for the 76ers, as he plans to take the GMAT this offseason. He had previously scheduled to take this exam on April 21 but he was instead busy leading Philadelphia to a 106-102 victory over the Miami Heat.


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