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“Degrading” Simone Biles Controversy Forced Jayson Tatum to Bring Up 4-Year-Old Son Deuce

Published 05/24/2022, 8:00 AM EDT

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Jayson Tatum, the Boston Celtics star, never refrains from sharing his opinion and standing up for his beliefs. As was the case in 2021, when artistic gymnast Simone Biles withdrew from the Olympic gymnastics team competition.

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Her withdrawal rocked the sports industry and garnered mixed reactions from across the globe. While some were in favor of her decision, many others criticized her for the same. According to the 25-year-old, she withdrew from the competition in order to “focus on her mental health.”


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Tatum, who is 24 himself, felt that the level of criticism needed him to stand up for what was right as well. A certain video particularly triggered him, as he jumped to Biles’ defense. Later, he explained the situation on Twitter and shared his perspective on the matter at hand.


In the tweet, he rhetorically asked why it is challenging to support others who are going through difficult times. This tweet was a response to Charlie Kirk’s video. As part of Kirk’s rant, he said Biles was “weak,” “immature,” a “selfish sociopath,” and “a shame to the country.” However, that didn’t sit right with Jayson. 

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Retweeting the video, he wrote, “Is it that hard to be supportive and empathetic to what others are going through? This is someone’s daughter and her health your referring to. Wonder if he has kids and how he would feel as a parent someone talking about his kids this way. Cause I’d be DAMNED. Simone is a hero!”

Jayson Tatum addresses Simone Biles’ mental health issue


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Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe asked Tatum what happened and what inspired him to support Biles after he tweeted this message. Tatum replied by saying the following: 

“From a perspective of a parent, I could only imagine if my son [Deuce] was on a public stage like that and dealing with mental health issues and problems of [his] own and wanted to get help for that. Seeing someone degrade and ridicule your child like I feel like that would make anybody angry and feel some type of way. From that stance, that why I said what I said.” 


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He then explained how he first saw this on social media and was outraged over it, which is why he shared his feelings. Simone Biles’ brave move sparked a global movement, with athletes’ mental health finally being tended to. Indeed, one will agree with Tatum when he says, Simone is a hero, one we should all learn from and look up to.



Anshika Rai

868 articles

Anshika Rai is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. She is currently pursuing her bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Anshika has been following NBA for many years now.

Edited By: Melroy Fernandes