Some players get upset when their names are mentioned in trade rumors.
Jayson Tatum is unlike most players.
Tatum’s name has been tossed around for months as the Boston Celtics continue to be linked to New Orleans Pelicans superstar Anthony Davis, but the 21-year-old is taking the trade speculation in stride, well-aware of how NBA front offices operate.
“Trade rumors don’t bother me,” Tatum told The New York Times earlier this week, with the Celtics playing the Indiana Pacers in the first round of the NBA playoffs. “They’re talking about trading me for guys like Anthony Davis. So, I mean, I must be doing something pretty well.”
This isn’t to suggest Tatum wants to be traded. He’s fit in just fine since being selected third overall by Boston in the 2017 NBA Draft, with many labeling him the next face of the franchise, especially if Kyrie Irving leaves in free agency this offseason.
But Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge is no stranger to pulling off blockbuster moves. And if the C’s land Davis this summer, it’s possible they’ll need to part ways with Tatum, whose future looks incredibly bright regardless of where he’s playing.
“I love the game of basketball,” Tatum said, per The New York Times. “Being traded is part of the game. I’ll play for whomever. It’s something I can’t control.”
Tatum has all of the physical tools to be great. Judging by his positive outlook and ability to focus on the task at hand, he also has the mental makeup to overcome the NBA’s unpredictability and the outside noise that comes with playing for a storied franchise with championship aspirations.
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images