Jayson Tatum Needs His Own Thread

nighthob

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
7,474
Did you seriously just put Bender in a group with Kyrie, AD, KAT, Young Howard, Booker and Tatum?
I sort of hope that he was talking about Jonathan Bender, who showed real flashes of stardom his second and third years in the NBA. Before his knees turned to jelly and all the promise remained unfulfilled. But even in those years Bender's flashes amounted to (at best) a great game every week, sandwiched around a lot of frustratingly nothing games.
 

djbayko

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
8,551
42
Waltham, MA
That subtle look he gave Embiid after Tatum hit his clutch jumper late in the 4th, as if to say "did you want to say something to me?" is sublime.
Didn't they work out together this summer? I'm not taking anything away from the look...it was indeed awesome. But I think it came from a place where two people have been engaged in a lot of friendly competition lately.
 

Spelunker

Well-Known Member
Gold Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 17, 2005
5,657
Didn't they work out together this summer? I'm not taking anything away from the look...it was indeed awesome. But I think it came from a place where two people have been engaged in a lot of friendly competition lately.
Yeah, that's how I took it. There was basically a wink there. Those guys like each other.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

Homeland Security
SoSH Member
Dec 4, 2005
17,625
39
Portsmouth, NH
Visit site
I prefer to build my team around the best player. YVMV.
You're not answering the question.

If you want to declare him the best player on the team, after one half into his second season with three other All Stars on the roster, knock yourself out. I'm not there yet.

If you want to talk about who to build around, that's an entirely different conversation, for multiple reasons.

He looked great. I'm not debating that. I think it's a tad early to declare him the best player on the team. YMMV.
 

Reverend

for king and country
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
I was basing it on the growth of last season too and where he is now starting.
Yup. Our baby boy is fast turning into an alpha. He's still several years away from reaching his strength apex as well......once he gains more explosiveness this kid is going to be something special here.
He’s 20. TWENTY.

Has there been a better 20 year old since LeBron?
As a confirmed bandwagon member and sometime driver of said bandwagon as such--cheers @DrewDawg !--I think it might be neat for you guys to stop and consider what things looked like when I showed up.

Like, here's my snap shot:
  • Draft insanity--Tatum.
  • Heart and soul of team traded.
  • Confusing rookie break-out sensation questioning where heart and soul will be.
  • Kyrie brought in and says Earth is flat.
  • Weird genius coach that sounded familiar--and then I realized it was the Butler Guy from when I lived in Indiana and much fist air punching ensued.
  • Too good to be true weirdo former Butler guy disintegrates 30 seconds before I manage to get the game on tv.
  • They have a papa bear that is married to a Miss Universe and is basically Just Awesome.
  • Marcus Smart revealed to have been kicked out of the X-Men.
  • Other stuff
What promptly happened was it became clear that Jalen Brown was actually the chosen heir to heart and soul and made a sick fucking second year leap that everyone here assured me was unforeseen and generally speaking unheard of.

It was fucking awesome, and it was a great time for me to sign up.

It really seems to me like Ainge-Stevens brain trust has strong ideas about developing players... and I mean really fucking developing players.

So: tl;dr

After signing up for the Jaylen Brown Sophomore Expereyance, I am pretty fucking fired up for the Jayson Tatum Sophomore Expereyance.
 

Reverend

for king and country
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
You're not answering the question.

If you want to declare him the best player on the team, after one half into his second season with three other All Stars on the roster, knock yourself out. I'm not there yet.

If you want to talk about who to build around, that's an entirely different conversation, for multiple reasons.

He looked great. I'm not debating that. I think it's a tad early to declare him the best player on the team. YMMV.
I think you guys are technically just disagreeing on how to use an unspoken time component.
 

chilidawg

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 22, 2015
1,386
Defense is hard to judge though, especially since no one on the Suns plays defense. If you put Booker on team like the Celtics, maybe he looks better defensively. Look no further than Kyrie Irving to see the impact it has.
I wouldn't say that KI has looked good defensively with the Celtics.
 

benhogan

Baynes Hogan
SoSH Member
Nov 2, 2007
6,133
52
Santa Monica
Prior to arriving, people were saying he was as bad as IT4.
That came from people that didn't like the trade.

Kyrie was considered really bad defensively BUT IT4 has been the worst defensive player in the NBA for 2 seasons running. KI also exhibited much better defense for the Cavs in the playoffs. It was pretty well understood that Kyrie didn't try hard on the defensive end during the regular season, hence the low defensive ranking.
 

lexrageorge

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 31, 2007
7,262
Kyrie's defense was probably adequate first half of last season, but then his knee really started to impact him.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 26, 2005
16,322
I sort of hope that he was talking about Jonathan Bender, who showed real flashes of stardom his second and third years in the NBA. Before his knees turned to jelly and all the promise remained unfulfilled. But even in those years Bender's flashes amounted to (at best) a great game every week, sandwiched around a lot of frustratingly nothing games.
I think HRB's relationship to Dragan Bender is akin to a person's relationship with an ex-GF who broke his heart where he's denying he loves her and putting her down all the time but really really pines for her deep down. :redwine:

But interesting you note the two. If you compare their 19 year old seasons, the two have same VORP (-0.3) but JB is marginally better by WS (-0.2 on -0.3 OWS + 0.1 DWS to -0.3 for DB on -0.7 OWS + 0.3 DWS).

If you compare age 20 seasons, DB had better VORP (-0.7 to -0.9) while they had same WS (-0.3). DB = -1.4 OWS + 1.1 DWS; JB = -1.0 OWS + 0.7 DWS.

So interesting comparison IMO.
 

nighthob

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
7,474
I vaguely remember that in his third year he played pretty well down the stretch, and there was a lot of talk that he'd finally turned the corner and was on his way to stardom (I had a friend that was an über Pacers fan, so I had to hear about it all the time). And I think that was the stretch where one game in four he looked like the beta version of the Greek Freak, but the other three games he was frustratingly mediocre. But in his fourth year the knee injuries started.
 

amarshal2

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 25, 2005
4,591
You can see Tatum has been pushing himself to try and reach another level as an NBA scorer. He might struggle a bit in the meantime but you can see the value down the line. I just hope he pushes himself to be a creator for others as much as he pushes to become an individual scorer.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 24, 2002
27,990
www.kittens.com
Even if Fultz figures it out and is the next Lillard or whatever his ceiling is, Ainge deserves all the praise for not only selecting Tatum over him but for adding the sweetener. And even if the pick doesn't amount to much, Ainge's et al's evaluation of this (Fultz, Ball, Tatum) draft is awe inspiring. However I wonder if even the C's braintrust knew how good Tatum might be. I bet they didn't think his trajectory would be this promising.
 

Eddie Jurak

Go Leafs Go
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 12, 2002
20,953
47
Melrose, MA
You can see Tatum has been pushing himself to try and reach another level as an NBA scorer. He might struggle a bit in the meantime but you can see the value down the line. I just hope he pushes himself to be a creator for others as much as he pushes to become an individual scorer.
He hurt them against Toronto late by ignoring open teammates as he drove 1-on-3 and got called for an offensive foul. I see that as more of a case of the Celtics offense being generally out of sync and confused than being about Tatum per se. His playmaking was much improved down the stretch last season.
 

benhogan

Baynes Hogan
SoSH Member
Nov 2, 2007
6,133
52
Santa Monica
Even if Fultz figures it out and is the next Lillard or whatever his ceiling is, Ainge deserves all the praise for not only selecting Tatum over him but for adding the sweetener. And even if the pick doesn't amount to much, Ainge's et al's evaluation of this (Fultz, Ball, Tatum) draft is awe inspiring. However I wonder if even the C's braintrust knew how good Tatum might be. I bet they didn't think his trajectory would be this promising.
Here's a nice little Braintrust recap before the Tatum + pick for Markelle fleecing. (and the MaMo for Bradley salary move)

https://ftw.usatoday.com/2017/06/celtics-trade-76ers-danny-ainge-markelle-fultz-nba-draft-picks
 

Eddie Jurak

Go Leafs Go
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 12, 2002
20,953
47
Melrose, MA
Question. Does Tatum look noticably stronger this year? To me he does, though I can't say for certain how much of that is just my imagination.
 

Light-Tower-Power

Member
SoSH Member
Jun 14, 2013
8,006
Its been well chronicled that Tatum added muscle this off-season. So it's not your imagination.

https://www.slamonline.com/nba/jayson-tatum-definitely-gotten-lot-stronger/
I hope he starts taking it to the hoop a little more now that he's stronger and should be able to finish though contact better. SSS but he has thrown up a glut of step-back 18-20 footers so far this season as we've all pointed out in the gamethreads. I'm interested to see how his game evolves this season because I don't believe that Brad loves how many midrange jumpshots he's throwing up.
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
31,037
I hope he starts taking it to the hoop a little more now that he's stronger and should be able to finish though contact better. SSS but he has thrown up a glut of step-back 18-20 footers so far this season as we've all pointed out in the gamethreads. I'm interested to see how his game evolves this season because I don't believe that Brad loves how many midrange jumpshots he's throwing up.
Agreed. Hopefully we’ll see more attacking the rim. Those 18-20 footers will always be there.
 

IdiotKicker

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 21, 2005
4,597
32
Somerville, MA
He hurt them against Toronto late by ignoring open teammates as he drove 1-on-3 and got called for an offensive foul. I see that as more of a case of the Celtics offense being generally out of sync and confused than being about Tatum per se. His playmaking was much improved down the stretch last season.
On this, I also think we're going to see a bit more of this as Tatum tries to find that line between being beneficially selfish and harmfully selfish. I don't think it's a bad thing, so long as he learns where that line is. But he's going to cross it more than a few times, and I'm fine with it, because I want a more aggressive and dominant Tatum, and these are the growing pains he has to go through to get there.
 

HomeRunBaker

bet squelcher
SoSH Member
Jan 15, 2004
17,585
Agreed. Hopefully we’ll see more attacking the rim. Those 18-20 footers will always be there.
While Tatum appears bigger that doesn't mean he understands how to utilize additional strength on the floor. His game is the same so I wouldn't expect or necessarily want him begin to barrel to the rim in situations where he normally wouldn't. Where it will likely help Tatum is in finishing WHEN those opportunities arise rather than actively looking for them as this really isn't in his DNA.

Another observation is that while Tatum may have improved HIS strength he still has a ways to go before reaching his apex. Having said that I hope you guys are cautious in how his game develops in that he's always going to be a 3-point/pullup shooter.....that is just what his game is. I have always comped his body/strength (and overall game to a degree) to that of Paul George who didn't take big leaps in this area until his 3rd and 4th year at ages 22 and 23. George began increasing his FTA up to 3.8 then 5.3/g during that climb and I'd expect the same gradual increase from Tatum but he's never going to be a Harden or a DeRozan in using his body control/strength to reach double figure attempts on average.

The future is bright for Tatum but wishing too much too soon on him isn't going to allow us to best appreciate what we are going to have in a couple of years. Enjoy the ride!
 

DrewDawg

Dorito Dink
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
33,765
Some numbers after 3 games:

--his eFG% is actually down slightly, because his 3PT% is down, but he's taking 4 more 2PT shots/game, and 5.5 more shots/game overall

--nearly 17% of his shots are from 10 to 16 feet, last year it was under 10%. From 16 feet out to the 3PT line, it's 23%, last year was 19%. So from 10 feet out to the 3PT line--40% of his shots versus 28% last year.

--he's shooting about the same number %-wise of 3PT shots this season--his shot increase is all long 2s. In close, he's down from 32% to 22% of shots.

--average distance of shot is 14.9 feet, up from 12.7

--Usage up to 26%
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
31,037
I don't expect Harden level FTAs from Tatum and am happy with his development. Would like to see him eventually get to the 6-7 range because he's such a good FT shooter and I think he has a very good ability to draw contact (some of which isn't being called yet). Overall, I'm quite pleased with Tatum's development. He's on his way to being a star, which Knicks fans in the office were lamenting this morning after they stopped whining about the Red Sox and Patriots being "lucky".
 

The Needler

lurker
Dec 7, 2016
1,468
53
Another observation is that while Tatum may have improved HIS strength he still has a ways to go before reaching his apex. Having said that I hope you guys are cautious in how his game develops in that he's always going to be a 3-point/pullup shooter.....that is just what his game is. I have always comped his body/strength (and overall game to a degree) to that of Paul George who didn't take big leaps in this area until his 3rd and 4th year at ages 22 and 23. George began increasing his FTA up to 3.8 then 5.3/g during that climb and I'd expect the same gradual increase from Tatum but he's never going to be a Harden or a DeRozan in using his body control/strength to reach double figure attempts on average.
Totally disagree. Tatum and George are very different players and Tatum already plays more at the rim and draws more contact. Tatum as a 19-year-old rookie took 365 FGA at the rim, more than Paul has had in any season of his career. (PG had just 285 and 189 in the last two years.) JT averaged over 5 FTA game in the playoffs, and I’d put it at over 50% he ends up over that mark this year, and would not be surprised if he settles around 8 or 9 when he actually moves even close to his peak. I also disagree with the claim that he is always going to be a 3-point/pull-up shooter. I expect he will become a very good postup player down the road.
 

Jimbodandy

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 31, 2006
2,695
50
around the way
Some numbers after 3 games:

--his eFG% is actually down slightly, because his 3PT% is down, but he's taking 4 more 2PT shots/game, and 5.5 more shots/game overall

--nearly 17% of his shots are from 10 to 16 feet, last year it was under 10%. From 16 feet out to the 3PT line, it's 23%, last year was 19%. So from 10 feet out to the 3PT line--40% of his shots versus 28% last year.

--he's shooting about the same number %-wise of 3PT shots this season--his shot increase is all long 2s. In close, he's down from 32% to 22% of shots.

--average distance of shot is 14.9 feet, up from 12.7

--Usage up to 26%
In addition to the usual SSS caveats, they just haven't gotten into a flow yet. Much in the way that Morris vomits long 2s with the second unit, it is not at all a surprise that Tatum is doing it now. There is a vacuum, and he's filling it. Pretty small chance that the breakdown looks like this for long. They are bound to sort out a regular offense.
 

lovegtm

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 30, 2013
3,843
Lisbon, PT
I guess he'll probably fix it, but it's really annoying that he's still passing up open 3s, driving, and then stepping back for 20-footers.

Given all the stuff he's works so hard on, it's weird that he didn't pick the obvious low-hanging fruit. I mean, can anyone recall his 3-point shot ever getting blocked?
 

Reverend

for king and country
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
On this, I also think we're going to see a bit more of this as Tatum tries to find that line between being beneficially selfish and harmfully selfish. I don't think it's a bad thing, so long as he learns where that line is. But he's going to cross it more than a few times, and I'm fine with it, because I want a more aggressive and dominant Tatum, and these are the growing pains he has to go through to get there.
This is largely what I (hope I) see as well: The team actually has to adjust not only to Hay-now but to a new and better Tatum. It's a new offense.

Growing pains? It does look disjointed a lot of the time. But on the other hand, each individual has shown at times that he can do what he's supposed to do. Drab will figure it out.
 

The Needler

lurker
Dec 7, 2016
1,468
53
The 0 for 5 from 3-point land last night was the worst deep shooting performance of his young career. He also opened with a 1 for 5, which matched his very worst 3-pt shooting night last year (twice, plus one in the playoffs).
 

bosox79

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 22, 2002
9,799
Small sample size and all but to date it looks like he's improved his handle(s) and vision a little bit while improving his rebounding a lot though some of that may be due to the team shooting 41%.

Can't say I'm worried about his shooting so far. I'd guess his 3 point % will go down from last year anyway since his volume will be up considerably. I still expect him to be around 40% though.
 

HomeRunBaker

bet squelcher
SoSH Member
Jan 15, 2004
17,585
I guess he'll probably fix it, but it's really annoying that he's still passing up open 3s, driving, and then stepping back for 20-footers.

Given all the stuff he's works so hard on, it's weird that he didn't pick the obvious low-hanging fruit. I mean, can anyone recall his 3-point shot ever getting blocked?
One thing Larry Bird used to pride himself on is that every summer he would work on one specific skill and come to training camp with that skill mastered or much improved. One year it was his left hand, another year his foot speed, another was low post moves, etc. I have no idea what Tatum's summer workouts looked like but if he was focusing on adding strength and improving his body this summer then I wouldn't expect him to come to camp with an improved 3-point shot. This goes back to my plea in giving Tatum 3-4 years to reach his peak rather than expecting him to be a "veteran All-Star" in year two. It truly is a process.
 

Reverend

for king and country
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
One thing Larry Bird used to pride himself on is that every summer he would work on one specific skill and come to training camp with that skill mastered or much improved. One year it was his left hand, another year his foot speed, another was low post moves, etc. I have no idea what Tatum's summer workouts looked like but if he was focusing on adding strength and improving his body this summer then I wouldn't expect him to come to camp with an improved 3-point shot. This goes back to my plea in giving Tatum 3-4 years to reach his peak rather than expecting him to be a "veteran All-Star" in year two. It truly is a process.
I buy this. It's also a strong approach.



I wonder how much team level discussion there is about what players work on in the off-season at this point. Like, there's working on your game, and then working on specific pieces the team can make maximal usage of. I wonder how they work that out.
 

Bob Montgomery's Helmet Hat

has big, douchey shoulders
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
On Get Up this morning, Jalen Rose did a little feature on his list of the top 5 players 25 or under.

1. Davis
2. Giannis
3. Embiid
4. Tatum
5. Simmons

He got a little push back about Tatum over KAT, and even a little about Mitchell, but Rose was strong in his evaluation of Tatum. I know it's meaningless, but I do love to see shit like this.
 

HowBoutDemSox

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 12, 2009
3,750
On Get Up this morning, Jalen Rose did a little feature on his list of the top 5 players 25 or under.

1. Davis
2. Giannis
3. Embiid
4. Tatum
5. Simmons

He got a little push back about Tatum over KAT, and even a little about Mitchell, but Rose was strong in his evaluation of Tatum. I know it's meaningless, but I do love to see shit like this.
Davis v. Giannis is a fascinating debate, maybe worthy of its own thread. I could go back and forth each time I consider it.

I'm also biased, but I'd go Tatum over Embiid, just given the importance of wings over centers in today's game, plus the age difference of four years.
 

bosox79

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 22, 2002
9,799
On Get Up this morning, Jalen Rose did a little feature on his list of the top 5 players 25 or under.

1. Davis
2. Giannis
3. Embiid
4. Tatum
5. Simmons

He got a little push back about Tatum over KAT, and even a little about Mitchell, but Rose was strong in his evaluation of Tatum. I know it's meaningless, but I do love to see shit like this.
Just a few days ago someone on here was saying Jokic was a top 5 player in the league. He's arguably not even a top 5 player under 25. Crazy how much young talent is in the league right now, and how much of that talent is "big."

The current crop of big guys in the NBA is easily the best since at least the early 90's.
 

TripleOT

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 4, 2007
1,829
Watching JT the first five games, my first thought is: "He's pressing his one on one offense a lot." So far, only 28% of hit twos and 38% of his shots overall have been assisted. Last season, 55% of his twos and 66% of all shots were assisted. Last season, his ratio of mid-range twos to threes was 1:1, this season it's 3:2.

Maybe it's the Kobe effect. This is what superstar scorers do, but iso gunning from mid-range isn't needed on a team stacked with offensive weapons. I'd prefer him to take the ball to the hoop more (72% at the rim this season, but only 18 attempts, compared to 22 threeballs and 17 long twos).
 

JakeRae

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 21, 2005
6,342
33
New York, NY
Visit site
Just a few days ago someone on here was saying Jokic was a top 5 player in the league. He's arguably not even a top 5 player under 25. Crazy how much young talent is in the league right now, and how much of that talent is "big."

The current crop of big guys in the NBA is easily the best since at least the early 90's.
I think it's pretty insane to consider either Tatum or Simmons in the same class as Jokic right now. (I don't think Embiid is close either but am being a bit conservative since the world of NBA player rankings is much higher on Embiid than I am.)

Jokic should be a consensus top 10 player and is an arguable top 5 player. That he isn't is a failure or analysts to look past his weaknesses and his body type/composition, not a product of his on court performance. Honestly, if Jokic looked more athletic and otherwise played the exact same game, I think he'd easily be a consensus top 10 player and would get named as a long shot MVP candidate.
 

the moops

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 19, 2016
2,113
44
Saint Paul, MN
He is not an arguable top 5 player though. I think Jokic is fucking awesome. But he is well below Curry, Durant, James, Davis, Giannis, Harden, Kawhi for sure