NBA Rumor: Jayson Tatum Extension?

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“Jayson has emerged as one of the best two-way players in the NBA through his first three seasons, and will continue to get better and better as a player and a leader,” said Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge. “He possesses unique scoring and playmaking abilities, and has displayed exceptional poise and maturity in how he approaches the game. He’s someone who, at 22 years of age, will be a central figure to this organization’s championship aspirations for many years to come.”

The biggest move Boston has in front of it is whether to offer Tatum a max contract extension, which the team is expected to do. Tatum, though, said that wasn’t what he was thinking about right after his season came to an end. “That’s a tough question to answer,” he said. “I haven’t even thought about that yet. I was just focused on this season. “The front office and my agent gotta talk about it. But I’m not thinking about that right now. We just lost a series. Just thinking about the guys in the locker room and the games. That’s what I’m thinking about. Stuff like that, going to happen, if it happens, [is] not really my concern. I’m not even thinking about that.

Jayson Tatum not considering sitting out

Jayson Tatum is not considering sitting out the restart of the season due to contract concerns, according to two league sources familiar with the Celtics All-Star’s plans. A report in the New York Daily News indicated that Tatum, who has been in town working out at the Celtics practice facility, was “reluctant to return” for concerns he would get hurt and that would impact his chances of signing a multi-year, max-salaried extension this offseason.

Jayson Tatum likely to get max extension

HoopsHype asked some experts to weigh in on Tatum’s future and the likelihood of him getting the max. “I think he is getting a max extension,” an Eastern Conference general manager told HoopsHype. “That may be one where you have some incentives in the deal; I mean, it’s not like he’s LeBron James or Giannis Antetokounmpo. But he’s pretty close to being a Top 20 player, if he isn’t already, and he’s still so young. Usually, you’re trying to keep goodwill with a player like that.

“Maybe it’ll be a max deal with certain likely bonuses – some fairly attainable incentives in there – but I think it’ll be a max deal. If that ends up being below the max, I’d be very, very surprised.” ESPN analyst Bobby Marks, who worked in NBA front offices for 20 years, agreed with the general manager. “I think they’ll give him a blank check,” Marks said with a laugh. “He’s one of those guys where you go with the blank-check approach. I think Tatum and Donovan Mitchell can basically dictate what salary they want. I think we saw with the extension that Boston gave Jaylen Brown, which wasn’t the full max, they gave themselves a little bit of cap flexibility because they knew that Jayson’s was coming up next. But, yeah, I think it’s a no-brainer. I doubt we’re going to see Boston come in with a low-ball number. (laughs)”

Max extension coming for Jayson Tatum?

Windhorst, in an appearance on SportsCenter on Saturday, talked about Boston’s plans this offseason. “If Jayson Tatum is the superstar that they envisioned when they began this whole rebuilding process when they traded Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce for all of those draft picks hoping to land a player like this, we could see ‘Glory Days’ for the Celtics again,” Windhorst said. “But it’s very much up in the air, and I’m gonna tell ya, they’re gonna have to pay him like it because after this season ends, he is going to get most likely a max contract. They’re going to bet that he becomes that player.”

Let’s start there. Boston and Tatum not reaching a contract extension this coming summer/fall doesn’t mean Tatum is necessarily leaving town. Far from it actually. In that somewhat unlikely scenario, the Celtics would retain the right to match any contract Tatum could sign as a restricted free agent. At this point, the max deal Tatum could sign with another team in the summer of 2021 would be for four years and a projected $134,375,000. That’s a first-year salary of $31.25 million (which is 25% of the projected salary cap of $125 million for the 2021-22 season) with 5% raises. Tatum and/or Boston could also delay signing a contract extension and he could still sign a full four or five-year max deal with the Celtics in 2021. That deal would be for either four years and $140 million or five years and $181.25 million. Same first-year salary applies in this situation of $31.25 million, but the raises jump to 8% off the first-year salary.

Let’s start there. Boston and Tatum not reaching a contract extension this coming summer/fall doesn’t mean Tatum is necessarily leaving town. Far from it actually. In that somewhat unlikely scenario, the Celtics would retain the right to match any contract Tatum could sign as a restricted free agent. At this point, the max deal Tatum could sign with another team in the summer of 2021 would be for four years and a projected $134,375,000. That’s a first-year salary of $31.25 million (which is 25% of the projected salary cap of $125 million for the 2021-22 season) with 5% raises. Tatum and/or Boston could also delay signing a contract extension and he could still sign a full four or five-year max deal with the Celtics in 2021. That deal would be for either four years and $140 million or five years and $181.25 million. Same first-year salary applies in this situation of $31.25 million, but the raises jump to 8% off the first-year salary.

Western Conference coach: “The teammates who are around a player do play a big part when it comes time for teams to make that kind of investment. They may be worried about being able to pay other core players down the road if they do this extension now. That’s what Boston is going through because they have to make a decision about Jaylen Brown now, with Jayson Tatum eligible for the same extension next summer. Or the front office may be thinking, ‘We shouldn’t give this much money to our third-best player.’ But the player’s value is relative. He may be the ‘third-best player’ on your team, but he’d be the top player on another team and they’re willing to pay him.”
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January 18, 2021 | 12:45 pm EST Update

PJ Tucker not opposed to being traded

Sources say Tucker is prepared to play for Houston for the season even without his future tied down, but he is not opposed to a trade should one materialize. It’s understood that an extension offer is on the table at this point, but Tucker has not accepted it. Teams have already made a number of phone calls to Houston about potentially acquiring Tucker.
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Sources also say the Rockets plan to be very aggressive with the sizable trade exception generated from the Harden trade and want to use it to get an additional quality player. Multiple teams have called about Tucker’s availability in wake of Harden’s departure. As far as an extension in Houston is concerned, sources say Tucker has tabled those discussions for now.
The Nets, sources said, appeared willing to trade anyone but Durant, Irving and Joe Harris (whom they’d signed to a four-year, $75 million deal entering this season). Durant’s history with Harden and interest in making this reunion a reality clearly played a massive part. “Brooklyn went Full Monty,” one rival executive whose team showed interest in Harden said. “Desperation was in the cards, and there’s nothing better in this league than to have desperation. …(The Rockets) are banking on it blowing up.”
What’s more, sources say, the Sixers weren’t the only other legitimate suitor playing that kind of part near the end. While Brooklyn and Philadelphia were widely seen as the two finalists, sources say Boston was still involved in the later stages of the negotiations as well. Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge discussed his team’s involvement publicly after the deal went down, indicating that the two teams had not had recent talks. Still, sources say the Rockets saw the Celtics as part of their process until the end and that there were multiple configurations of a deal still possible on that front. As The Athletic reported on Dec. 24, Boston and Portland had been late additions to Harden’s list.