Jayson Tatum discusses summer workouts with Paul Pierce and why he avoided wrist surgery


“He came into the gym every day and it was cool to have him around. He told us a lot of stories about the championship team that we can try to apply to this year.”

Jayson Tatum AP Photo/Michael Dwyer
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Jayson Tatum put his hands on his hips and jokingly sighed as he opened his press conference at Celtics Media Day.1

“I bet I can guess what you’re going to ask me,” Tatum said. “I spent a lot of time with Paul Pierce this summer, which was great. He was really motivated. Paul actually lost 15-20 pounds. And it was about four weeks.

“He came into the gym every day and it was cool to have him around,” Tatum continued. “He told us a lot of stories about the championship team that we can try to apply to this year. Hopefully, we see a lot more of Paul.”

Tatum said that he’s added about a dozen pounds this summer. He was listed at 210 pounds last year. He said that he’s been seeing positive gains in the gym during weightlifting sessions.

“I’ve always lifted heavier in the summer than I do during the season,” Tatum said. “I guess I have set some personal records in the weight room this summer, but not that much more than I did last summer. I have put on like 12 pounds, and I think part of that is getting a little older.

“My body is maturing,” Tatum said. “I might lose some weight once the season starts, once we start playing four times a week. But I think I’ve just gotten a little bit bigger every year, and I’ve gotten a little bit older, so I think those go hand in hand.”

Tatum said that he opted not to have surgery on his injured wrist after seeking advice from doctors.

“I just got a bunch of second, third, and fourth opinions,” Tatum said. “Surgery wasn’t a common one. I wasn’t all the way certain about it, but did all the right things this summer. Took all the right measures to make sure I was healthy and prepared to come into this season with no distractions.”

The Celtics have undergone an eventful offseason. Marcus Smart, Rob Williams, Malcolm Brogdon, and Grant Williams are gone. Kristaps Porzingis and Jrue Holiday have been added to the team.

Tatum said he’s feeling the pressure of championship expectations and plans on making his voice heard as a leader this season.

“My voice, my presence is felt during the games, huddles, locker room, practice, film,” Tatum said. “I speak up. Everybody may not see it. It may not be the loudest. But, I speak my mind and I listen to guys. Guys listen to me. It’s a mutual respect thing.”