Is Jayson Tatum Really Changing His Jersey No to 24 Next Season? Exploring Viral Rumor

Jayson Tatum is one of the biggest admirers of Kobe Bryant, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise if he were to change his jersey number to 24. But is he? Let’s find out

Published on Jun 19, 2024  |  05:11 PM IST |  103.3K
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Is Jayson Tatum Changing Jersey Number to Kobe Bryant’s 24? Find Out

Recently, a rumor started that Jayson Tatum is changing his jersey number to No. 24 next season. The channel NBACentel on Twitter posted this with a picture of Tatum and the caption "JUST IN: Jayson Tatum is changing his jersey number to No. 24 next season (fire emoji)." The post even said it was reposted via Chris Haynes.

It is well known to all that Jayson Tatum is a Kobe Bryant devotee. From wearing Bryant's No. 10 for Team USA in the Olympics to getting a ‘24′ tattoo with a Mamba design, he has shown his admiration for the late player in several ways. 

It’s not crazy to think he might change his jersey number to 24, Kobe's number. But how much truth does this news hold? Let's find out.

Verdict: Fake

Jayson Tatum is not changing his jersey number to No. 24 next season

Fake news alert! And here’s why: Last night, Jayson Tatum and the Boston Celtics defeated the Dallas Mavericks to secure their 18th NBA title. It was a joyous occasion for Boston, especially as the team won at home. Jaylen Brown was crowned Finals MVP after some phenomenal performances. 

It turns out, the abovementioned information is the fodder behind fueling this rumor. The account that posted the news about Jayson Tatum changing his jersey number to Kobe Bryant's 24 is a parody account. The account's name is NBACentel, clearly a parody of NBACentral.


The account's description says, "PARODY Account. NOT Affiliated with The Dunk Central," and they are clearly making fun of Jayson Tatum supposedly trying to take up Kobe's jersey number, given his obsession, as fans joked, "Wants to be Kobe so bad."

Tatum and Brown are one of the NBA's best duos, and on Monday, they showed the world what they are capable of. This could very well be the start of a dynasty.

Jayson Tatum has set a new record for the most career playoff points by a player aged 26 or younger. He surpassed Kobe Bryant’s record during Game 5 of the 2024 NBA Finals against the Dallas Mavericks on June 17.

Unfortunately, amid his great moment, Jayson Tatum was being mocked by fans online. First, he was made fun of for trying to recreate the Kobe Bryant Larry O'Brien photo. Then, he got more heat for copying two other legends. 

He tried to recreate the infamous Kevin Garnett "anything is possible" interview from the 2008 Celtics run. He also copied Kanye West's Grammy speech where he said, "I guess we'll never know."


Tatum is known as a huge Kobe Bryant admirer and was one of his mentees. People online are also trolling Tatum's role, saying he was second-fiddle to Brown, similar to Bryant's role with O'Neal during their three-peat from 2000 to 2002.

READ MORE: Jayson Tatum Invokes Kobe Bryant While Discussing Possibility of Losing NBA Finals MVP to Jaylen Brown

Jayson Tatum has previously worn Kobe Bryant's number 10 jersey 

Jason Tatum was 15 when he made his first USA Basketball national team in 2013, playing in the FIBA Americas U-16 championships in Uruguay. His jersey bore No. 10, Kobe Bryant's number, Tatum's favorite player's number.

Bryant wore No. 24 and No. 8 with the Los Angeles Lakers but wore No. 10 for USA Basketball when he helped the Americans win gold medals at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics. 

Tatum has worn that number as part of U.S. teams several times since, including at the Tokyo Olympics, where the Americans aimed to capture a fourth consecutive gold medal.


"With this being the first Olympics since we lost him, it holds that much more value," Tatum said. "It's not something I take lightly."

The No. 10 jersey holds significance across sports, especially in soccer, where it often adorns the best players. Pele wore 10 for Brazil, Diego Maradona wore it for Argentina, and Lionel Messi wears it now. 

Landon Donovan wore it for the U.S. men's soccer team, and it has since been passed to Christian Pulisic. For the U.S. women's soccer team, it belongs to Carli Lloyd.

For USA Basketball, it was Bryant's. When he decided not to play in the 2016 Olympics, the number ended up with Kyrie Irving, another player who idolizes Bryant, just as Tatum does. Now, as was the case when the U.S. went to the Basketball World Cup, the jersey found its way back to Tatum.

READ MORE: ‘You Are NOT Steph Curry’: Fans Roast Jayson Tatum After Celtics Star Responds to Haters Post 2024 NBA Title Win

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About The Author

Natasha Bose, a master's graduate in English Literature from Indira Gandhi National Open University, is a Kolkata-based writer



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