Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
98.5 The Sports Hub’s Cedric Maxwell turned heads (we’re assuming) when he relayed a story to CLNS Media Network’s Adam Kaufman about Celtics second-year forward Jayson Tatum and his father, Justin.
As the story goes, while discussing the prospects of Boston trading Tatum for New Orleans Pelicans superstar center Anthony Davis, a player the Celtics are believed to have been targeting in a trade for quite some time, Tatum’s father told Maxwell that “I probably would trade him [for Anthony Davis] too, if he wasn’t my son.”
Later, when Maxwell recounted the conversation between he and Justin, Tatum told him “Yeah, I’d trade me too for Anthony Davis,” prompting laughter from the broadcast hosts
Apparently, there’s no bad time to discuss the potential Anthony Davis trade that can’t happen this season because of the Rose Rule. It’s a pretty innocent comment by Tatum – even more so given his deadpan demeanor – and yet the hot takes and speculation went out of control.
Probably the most unfitting picture possible to go with the quote, not to mention the skull emoji that’s there because… reasons?
Evidently, it doesn’t matter to anyone that the Celtics can’t trade for Davis until Kyrie signs a new contract, so I guess we’re just going to have this discussion once per week until then. In order to make salaries match, the Celtics would have to give up one of Hayward or Horford, both of which are obviously not on Davis’ level, which makes me glad that I’m not in Danny Ainge’s shoes. Maybe this is a hot take: I like the Celtics right now. I don’t have a compulsion to make trades and shake things up every year. I like seeing how things play out. Putting the mother-of-all-trade-offers on the table for an Anthony Davis doesn’t excite me like the Kevin Garnett trade did. Obviously, the ceiling on Davis is higher, but Garnett is a far more exciting player and you’ll never convince me otherwise.
I’m not saying it’s not worth giving it all up for Davis. I just wouldn’t want to be the guy to do it.
On page 2, let’s check in on draft picks
I’ve been obsessing over the Kings, Memphis, and Clippers picks the Celtics are owed next summer.
- The Memphis pick, protected 1-8, is currently sitting at ninth.
- The Sacramento pick, protected only if it’s first overall, is 12th.
- The Clippers pick, protected 1-14, is now 22nd after hovering at 20 for a while.
- The Celtics’ own first rounder is 23rd.
While the Eastern Conference isn’t as weak as past years, it’s certainly top heavy and not nearly as competitive as the West, where every team other than the Phoenix Suns has a real shot of making the playoffs. This is great for the MEM/SAC picks as it looks increasingly unlikely that both of those teams could sneak in the playoffs with so many other teams with similar records around them in the standings.
The 8th and 14th seeds in the West are separated by 3.5 games. It’s inevitable that some good teams will miss the playoffs. I’d say five of the top eight teams currently are mortal locks to make the playoffs – Golden State, Denver, Oklahoma City, Houston, and Los Angeles (Lakers). This leaves three spots left for nine teams who want them. The odds that Memphis, Sacramento, and Los Angeles (Clippers) all occupy those spots seem extremely low.