Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum was putting up numbers on par with the best in the NBA before the league’s season hit a pause.
Tatum’s Player of the Month honors in February perhaps best depicted the class he was starting to entrench himself with, despite being younger than true superstars like LeBron James and Kevin Durant.
But maybe that’s what makes a recent poll by ESPN that much more questionable.
ESPN asked 20 scouts, coaches and executives from across the league to rank the four brightest young stars. Those featured include Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic, Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young, New Orleans Pelicans’ Zion Williamson and Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant.
As you can see, Tatum wasn’t even mentioned among the group, which was put together “based on their potential to lead a franchise,” per ESPN’s Tim Bontemps.
Doncic earned 17 of the 20 first-place votes. Morant (two) and Williamson (one) also earned votes by those around the league.
Celtics fans would almost certainly disagree.