Celtics refused to trade Tatum in Davis deal

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher 

The Boston Celtics were considered the favorites to acquire Anthony Davis with their assets. However, Danny Ainge refused to deal his young stars 

Ainge elected to keep Jayson Tatum instead of putting him in a deal. The Celtics President of Basketball Operations have previously said Tatum was the best player of the 2017 NBA Draft.

Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum warms up before a game against the Philadelphia 76ers
Jayson Tatum warms up before a game against the Philadelphia 76ers (Getty Images)

As a result of Ainge holding onto Tatum, Davis was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday night. In the blockbuster deal, the New Orleans Pelicans acquired three players and three picks.

In the deal, the Pelicans acquired Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, and Josh Hart. In addition, they acquired three first-round draft picks, including the No. 4 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. 

With Kyrie Irving expected to leave via free agency, Tatum will be the face of the franchise moving forward. When Irving was hurt during the 2017-18 season, Tatum excelled as the primary scorer. 

He took a step back this season with Irving and Gordon Heyward back from their injuries. 

The 21-year-old St. Louis, Missouri native was the third overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. He has played the past two seasons with the Celtics.

He made 79 appearances, including 79 starts. Tatum had 15.7 points per game with 6.0 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.1 steals, and 0.7 blocks per game in 31.1 minutes per game.

As a rookie, he made 80 appearances, including 80 starts. He averaged 13.9 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.0 steals, and 0.7 blocks in 30.5 minutes per game.

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