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Coach K To Jayson Tatum After Not Shooting The Ball: "Soft A** St. Louis Kid"

Credit: Getty Images

Credit: Getty Images

Coach Mike Krzyzewski is one of the most famous coaches in basketball history after all the years he's spent in college basketball, coaching Team USA, and more. He is one of the best ever at his job, creating big memories with his players year after year but when he needs to be tough, he doesn't hesitate.

That is what Jayson Tatum learned during his time at Duke, where he played under Coach K and saw firsthand how he could motivate his players when they weren't playing at their best level. Back in 2019, he revealed how the legendary coach sparked the fire inside the current Boston Celtics star during his freshman year with Duke.

"The best story I got, we (were) playing at Virginia and I only had two points," Tatum recently said on The Players' Tribune's Knuckleheads. "I had two points in the first half, and I guess I kept passing up shots. Came in, (Coach K) took his suit jacket off and he threw it like right at my feet. And he was yelling at me, and I'll never forget this -- he said, 'You acting like a soft-ass St. Louis kid.' And I was pissed. I had like 28 points in the second half.

"Anywhere I go -- I go out of town, I let it be known like I'm from St. Louis. So, you can't call me soft and you can't disrespect where I'm from. And he knew the buttons to push because the whole second half I was hot."

That really worked for the coach, the player and the team, as he finished with 28 points after scoring 21 in the second half of the game, which Duke won. That was enough for Tatum and after that, he went off, demonstrating he wasn't soft and he knows how to represent St. Louis.

Coach K has had a legendary career and a big reason for that is the way he motivates players and makes them the best version of themselves they can be. No wonder a lot of people want to play for him but only a handful of them, like Tatum, can fulfill that dream every season.