Celtics’ Jayson Tatum on becoming young father: ‘I think we need more role models like that’

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Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum may be among the sport’s top NBA stars, but his 4-year-old son usually steals the show when the game is over.

Tatum opened up Tuesday before the Celtics won Game 3 over the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals about what it meant to him to become a father at such a young age and when his own career was on the verge of taking off shoot.

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Deuce Tatum plays with a ball prior to the NBA Finals game between the Celtics and the Golden State Warriors at TD Garden June 8, 2022 in Boston.
(Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

“I think in 2017 when I got drafted I didn’t have a deuce but he was born in 2017 so that was awesome, that was the greatest year of my life right? When I started this new chapter in my career, I only had one kid,” Tatum told reporters. “Nor was I sacrificing my mindset that I was going to be the best dad I could and be the best basketball player. There was no guideline or no precise way of doing this.It was all about what was natural.

Jayson Tatum of the Celtics carries his son Deuce after the NBA Finals game June 8, 2022 in Boston.

Jayson Tatum of the Celtics carries his son Deuce after the NBA Finals game June 8, 2022 in Boston.
(Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

“I just do what’s natural. I’m near him every day. I think being able to go through this journey together because I was 19 when I was drafted is like growing up together. As he got older, I go through my career, sharing these moments, experiencing this together as we grow up. I think that’s the coolest part for me.

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Tatum and his son can often be seen together on the court or in their free time when the Celtics guard is not playing basketball.

Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics celebrates with son Deuce and singer Nelly after the 116-100 win over the Golden State Warriors June 8, 2022 in Boston.

Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics celebrates with son Deuce and singer Nelly after the 116-100 win over the Golden State Warriors June 8, 2022 in Boston.
(Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

“I think we need more role models like this. Just having more male fathers and things like that show that you can do both no matter when you work, whatever your job is,” he said.

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After Wednesday night’s win, Deuce was greeted by rapper Nelly after the game. The two shared a sweet fist bump.

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