The Boston Celtics might have made the right choice in sending the No. 1 pick to the Philadelphia 76ers and drafting Jayson Tatum third overall this year.
The 19-year-old forward appeared in three Summer League games for the Celtics, posting 17.7 points and eight rebounds per game to go with a .422 field-goal percentage. The performance got Tatum some national attention, as SI.com named him “Most Likely to Succeed” in their NBA rookie superlatives.
“There are players with glitzier games and bigger shoe contracts, but few are more versatile than Jayson Tatum, who flashed the full range of his talents at Summer League,” Sports Illustrated’s Deantae Price wrote in a story published Monday. “He’s been called Paul George Lite before, but the comparison feels more apt now. Obviously that projection hinges on how he develops. In Boston, though, he will have the luxury of being brought along slowly. Celtics president Danny Ainge coveted Tatum so much that one has to believe his future in Boston will be a bright one.”
As Price explained, Tatum probably won’t be a difference-maker right out of the gate. But the Celtics obviously are better off with someone who can help them over time and possibly develop into a star.
Then again, Boston couldn’t really go wrong even if it kept the No. 1 pick, as the Sixers’ Markelle Fultz, who was drafted first overall, was named “Most Likely to Win Rookie of the Year.”
No. 2 pick Lonzo Ball was named “Most Likely to Have a Parent Storm the Court.”
Thumbnail photo via Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports Images
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