Celtics’ Tatum on opener: ‘We’re not playing LeBron’

Jayson Tatum of the Celtics is glad to not be facing LeBron James in the season-opening game this season.

The Boston Celtics’ season-opening game last season was the most-anticipated of the lidlifters across the NBA — Kyrie Irving playing his first game as a Celtic and at and against his former team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, and more specifically, LeBron James.

It’s a new year and a new set of circumstances as Boston will tip off this season Tuesday night against the Philadelphia 76ers at TD Garden (8, TNT).

While the Celtics KO’d the 76ers in five games in the second round of the NBA playoffs last spring, the season-opening clash against Philadelphia doesn’t carry nearly as much sizzle as the one played a year ago, something Boston’s Jayson Tatum admits.

“It’s like night and day,” he said, according to Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe. “Last year, we were playing the Cavs, playing LeBron.

“This year, we’re not playing LeBron. So I’m not as nervous.”

With LeBron off to the Los Angles Lakers and Western Conference, the Celtics, Sixers and perhaps Toronto Raptors are considered the new beasts of the East.

Other than that, things are fairly wide open — a point Tatum has made before even the first game.