Jaylen Brown says outside noise improved Jason Tatum’s relationship

Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum tried to nip it in the bud before the regular season started.

In a joint interview with Chris Forsberg at the Celtics media day last September, the two young stars of the squad insisted that their relationship was on a solid footing and that they were committed to success in Boston.

“If you want to hear it from me, that’s my dog,” Brown said of Tatum.

Jaylen opens up about how the relationship with Kyrie has changed

But with the Celtics squabbling early in the season, questions persisted over whether Tatum and Brown could get along, so much so that some were calling on the team to break up the young duo.

Jay and his teammates responded by achieving one of the greatest second-half turnovers in NBA history, finishing second in the Eastern Conference at 51-31.

Reflecting on Boston’s running season, Brown admitted that all the noise he and Tatum dealt with early in the campaign may have fostered an already strong relationship.

“You don’t really think about it, especially when you’re in the middle of it now or about to start something like playoffs. But I think it’s grown,” Brown told NBC Sports Boston’s Abby Chen at 1 in the interview that aired Thursday.

Someone asked a question in the media (recently), like, ‘Did all the media attention between you and Jason bring you guys a little closer? “And we were fine before… There were a lot of media reports saying we weren’t friends – I don’t know where that came from. I think a lot of people were just making things up. We were fine.”

“And I think because of that, maybe that brought us a little bit closer in a sense, in a weird way. I think in a sense, to answer your question, our relationship probably grew because of that.”

Adversity often brings people closer together, and this seems to be true not only of Jays but of the entire Celtics as well. While team chemistry appeared to be an issue earlier in the season, C has coalesced into a tight-knit group under first-year coach Ime Udoka who plays selfless first-team basketball.

Forsberg: How Ime Udoka set the tone from day one in Boston

Tatum and Brown have been role models in this department. Both players have averaged highs in assists this season (4.4 per game for Tatum; 3.5 per game for Brown) while plotting big strides as facilitators to help Boston’s attack improve dramatically.

The hard work of the Celtics was ahead of them, with Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and the Brooklyn Nets posing a tough first-round challenge. But Brown and Tatum already have a lot of experience dealing with adversity.

Check out Brown’s full interview with Abby Chin on YouTube or in the video below.

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