Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown silence critics after capping dominant season with title

After years of enduring hot takes and desperate pleas from the outside to break them up, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown delivered an NBA Championship to Boston, shutting up their critics
2024 NBA Finals - Game Two
2024 NBA Finals - Game Two / Adam Glanzman/GettyImages

"What they gonna say now?" The triumphant question echoed through the Boston Celtics' locker room late into the night by Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.

Indeed. What can they say now? What can all the critics who vehemently pushed for the franchise to split up the two All-Stars say now after they routed the competition and blasted the Dally-Oop—err, Dallas Mavericks—in the NBA Finals 106-88 in Game 5, cementing banner No. 18 in the rafters of TD Garden?

The triumph marks a dramatic turnaround from their past playoff heartbreaks. In 2022, Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors marched into Beantown, defeating the Celtics in six games and ending their season in disappointment.

The following year, the resilient Miami Heat, led by Jimmy Butler, managed to outlast Boston. Miami narrowly avoided a collapse reminiscent of the 2004 New York Yankees, thanks in part to a timely injury.

So much for Game 4. It turned out to be a fluke. Also, so much for the narrative that they couldn't close out big games or that they would always come up short. Those doubts are now a thing of the past. Go look for some new material and use the same energy you had when trolling to do so.

It's been a rough journey overall for Tatum and Brown. They have faced every challenge head-on since they traded their California and Duke blue for the prestigious green and white of the Boston Celtics. A special thanks is due to the Los Angeles Lakers and Philadelphia 76ers for their draft choices, which ultimately paved the way for this dynamic duo to shine in Boston.

Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown sent their critics into timeout after finally capturing elusive championship

Don't forget Nick Wright's bold prediction of Mavs in 5, which aged about as well as milk left out in the Texas sun. Perhaps next time he'll consult with a Magic 8-ball instead? How about Stephen A. Smith and him singing about breaking up the J's multiple times while also regurgitating the same old tune about his beloved Knicks and their injuries? Sorry, but excuses won't polish the Celtics' championship trophy.

They are not alone in their misjudgment. Several ESPN analysts, along with FOX, seemed enamored with the Mavericks, portraying them as lovable underdogs against the supposed "bully Celtics" and their storied narrative. This sudden shift in perspective disregarded the resilience and character of Boston and supposedly their easy path to the finals.

If memory serves, don't you play who is in front of you? However, as the Celtics proved on the court, narratives and perceptions can swiftly crumble in the face of undeniable performance and determination.

We won't delve into the Twitterverse and the vitriol directed at the Celtics and their fans by rival fanbases, particularly after Dallas triumphed in Game 4 and sparked discussions about overcoming a 3-0 deficit, a feat that no one in the history of the NBA ever accomplished. 3-1 has been done before, but not 3-0.

The belief in the impossible was so palpable that the Mavericks' Twitter account even attempted to stoke the flames and rattle the Celtics fans by recreating the iconic LeBron down 3-1 image with Luka Doncic. However, the only thing that ended up rattled was Derrick White's teeth. It may look disfigured, but White returned and hit the shots that made it work. Oh, and don't forget Payton Pritchard and his highlights.

Ultimately, it was a classic case of "be careful what you wish for." Mavericks fans confidently declared, "We want Boston." However, reality proved harsh as the Celtics delivered a decisive gentlemen's sweep, even with Kristaps Porzingis on the bench and veteran Al Horford having to step up more, all those years of waiting finally paid off.

Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown achieved something together that sets them apart from several other dynamic duos. They are not Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan (though Lowry does have a ring), nor Steve Nash and Amar'e Stoudemire, or John Stockton and Karl Malone. They are champions. Deal with it.

Dallas' Game 4 dismantling of Boston fuels doubts despite a 3-1 lead. Dallas' Game 4 dismantling of Boston fuels doubts despite a 3-1 lead. dark. Next