BOSTON (CBS) – Jayson Tatum is still adjusting to life in Tokyo, as he and the US Men’s National Team prepare for Sunday’s Olympics games. Traveling from Boston to Las Vegas to Tokyo in the last month has affected his sleep schedule, but the honor of playing in the Olympics hasn’t cost him the Celtics star.
With everything Tatum – and everyone else for that matter – has been through in the past two years, he has learned a very important life lesson.
“I have learned not to take things for granted. The climate of the past year and a half, realize that everything is not as promised and you never know what may or may not happen,” Tatum told reporters Thursday morning from Tokyo. “So I am in the moment and enjoying this journey and this process. 23 years old and participating in the Olympics, it’s an honor and a dream come true. “
Tatum and Team America’s gold rush begins Sunday morning at 8 a.m. ET against France. It will pit Tatum against Evan Fournier, his Celtics teammate last season, and former Boston players Guerschon Yabusele and Vincent Poirier.
“Those three, they are still my teammates. Enjoyed playing with them, especially Guerschon,” said Tataum. “I guess I’ll be happy to see them on Sunday, but we won’t be friends once the game starts.”
Tatum struggled with his hit while playing the show in Las Vegas, but found a way to contribute everywhere else in the USMNT’s final game against Argentina, pulling down six rebounds while creating five assists. create. He also played some solid defense throughout the show, and was willing to do whatever it took to help Team America win the gold.
“When your shot doesn’t fall and you’ll be on the floor a lot, you have to make sure you’re doing other things; bounce back, defend, push it to the floor, get everyone involved,” he said. “The only thing that matters is that we win the gold medal, not how many points you score. Just do everything that contributes to victory.”