We came across a good read on Boston.com by Nicole Yang speaking to Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski about his thoughts on Jayson Tatum's rookie year with the Celtics. You can read the entire article here but below are some thoughts from Coach K that stuck with me.
I thought it was fascinating that Coach K considered wanting "to get better" as a strength. He didn't dismiss his talent but made sure to point out that Tatum wants to improve each time he steps on the court -- and that was certainly the case this season.
“I think the main strength he has — besides the talent — is that he always wants to get better,” Krzyzewski said. “He’ll come ready to learn every day, and he’s not afraid of making mistakes in the learning process.”
As for areas of improvement, Coach K mentioned talking. We are always imploring our players and teams to talk more so it's nice to see one of the game's best coaches recognize its importance.
“I always like to see him talk more,” Krzyzewski said. “When you’re talking, that means you’re more consumed with the game you’re playing. You own it more.”
Another critical form of learning is listening and seeing -- which Coach K says is also a strength of Tatum's.
He cautions, however, there’s no need to overdo it. In moments when Tatum might seem quiet or reserved, Krzyzewski said it’s because he’s listening and observing.
“That’s why he’s such a good learner,” he said. “He’s not talking all the time because he’s listening and seeing and then doing. He’s really ahead of his years.”