May 23 update: As expected, Tatum is available for Game 4 against the Heat. He was listed as probable with a shoulder injury, so it was always highly likely he would suit up. We’ll see if he shows any signs of struggling with the issue, although Tatum did return to Game 3 after he did suffer the injury initially.
May 22 update: Tatum is probable for Game 4 with a shoulder injury. He suffered the issue late in Game 3 and looked like he was in tremendous pain, but did eventually come back to the contest after briefly going to the locker room. Tatum is the key for Boston, so his presence is massive in what is basically a must-win game for the Celtics.
Update: Well, there’s something in the Boston locker room that magically heals injuries. Tatum has come back into the game after appearing to suffer a serious injury. The Celtics have gotten both him and Smart back in this game.
Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum suffered a shoulder injury in Game 3 against the Miami Heat and eventually went to the locker room after getting some attention from the team’s training staff. Tatum lost the ball on a steal and stayed down on the floor despite the action continuing.
We've talked all week about how physical this series would be. It's been a battle on the floor tonight. Jayson Tatum leaving the floor with a serious-looking injury.— Coley Harvey (@ColeyHarvey) May 22, 2022
This has been a ridiculous game in terms of injuries for both teams. Jimmy Butler didn’t start the second half and was ruled out due to knee inflammation, while Kyle Lowry went out with a hamstring issue that’s been bothering him all postseason before coming back in. Marcus Smart also checked out with an ankle sprain before eventually coming back.
The timing of Tatum’s injury is not ideal as the Celtics were in the middle of mounting a comeback. They’re only down six points with about five minutes left in the game, although it’ll be hard to win this game without Tatum. Look for Jaylen Brown and Grant Williams to take on bigger roles offensively if Tatum cannot return.