Celtics

Jayson Tatum is the face of the Celtics now

Jayson Tatum is the face of the Celtics now

Anthony Davis will be moving on to his preferred destination, the Los Angeles Lakers, which officially took Boston out of the running.

But as we've seen in recent years, some of the best moves made by Danny Ainge and the Boston Celtics have been the moves they didn't make.

Those non-moves often afforded another player to rise to the forefront, with this being no different.

Simply put, Davis being traded to the Lakers all but cement Boston building around Jayson Tatum.

Because no Anthony Davis all but guarantees Kyrie Irving will not return to Boston next season.

And when you look at this roster and what Boston could potentially add via free agency, it's clear that this will be Tatum's team. The 6-foot-8 forward has shown glimpses of being an all-star, franchise-caliber talent.

With Davis off the table and Irving unlikely to return, Tatum will have the benefit of opportunity and wisdom.

Heading into his third season, Tatum has experienced the highs and lows that come with being in the spotlight for a high profile team with visions of a championship.

That experience can only benefit him with the spotlight being brighter - a lot brighter - now that Tatum is on track to be the future face of the Celtics franchise.

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Has Ben Simmons improved his jump shot this offseason?

Has Ben Simmons improved his jump shot this offseason?

It's that time of year. When videos surface of NBA players working out or playing pickup games in the offseason that make people lose their minds one way or another. 

This is especially the case with players who have glaring weaknesses fans are hoping they develop during the summer, and a recent video of Ben Simmons making jump shots should foster a pretty big reaction. 

Simmons has just about every skill you'd want from a player besides an ability to knock down shots from the perimeter. Not only that, but his unwillingness to take shots from anywhere outside of the paint has hurt the Sixers offense in back-to-back postseasons. If Simmons develops a consistent jump shot of any kind, the Celtics, among the rest of the Eastern Conference is in trouble. 

Boston already matches up poorly with the Sixers on paper. Philly has a ton of size with Simmons, Al Horford and Joel Embiid that the Celtics simply can't match. The Sixers' primary weakness may be perimeter shot-creation and floor spacing, but if Simmons can force his defender to play closer than the three-foot cushion he usually faces against Brad Stevens' teams, they'll be an incredibly tough out in the playoffs. 

But I mean, come on. Are we really going to put stock in a 27-second video where Simmons makes four jumpers with that absolutely hideous form with his left elbow sticking out? Really? 

But let's not rain on Philly's parade. Let it fly, Ben Simmons. Let it fly. 

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NBA Rumors: Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown both 'honored to even be under consideration' for Team USA

NBA Rumors: Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown both 'honored to even be under consideration' for Team USA

With star player after star player withdrawing their names from Team USA's FIBA World Cup roster, two Celtics are reportedly honored to even be under consideration. 

According to The Athletic's Joe Vardon, Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown were on a 'short list' of players under consideration to replace the growing number of withdrawing stars, and Smart has already been added to the training camp roster, per Shams Charania

Smart will join fellow teammates Kemba Walker and Jayson Tatum on the roster, and if Brown eventually gets an invite, the Celtics could have a third of the final roster representing the franchise. A final roster spot isn't guaranteed for any of them -- though Walker and Tatum have to be near locks at this point -- but it could be a good opportunity for four of Boston's key players to get acclimated to each other before training camp starts in September. 

Smart then tweeted his appreciation for the opportunity he has this summer.

Here's an updated roster at the roster:

Guards: 
Kemba Walker, Boston Celtics
Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
Donovan Mitchell, Utah Jazz
Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors
Marcus Smart, Boston Celtics

Wings: 
Khris Middleton, Milwaukee Bucks
Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics
Harrison Barnes, Sacramento Kings
P.J. Tucker, Houston Rockets

Bigs: 
Kevin Love, Cleveland Cavaliers
Andre Drummond, Detroit Pistons
Myles Turner, Indiana Pacers
Kyle Kuzma, Los Angeles Lakers
Paul Millsap, Denver Nuggets
Brook Lopez, Milwaukee Bucks

Out of the 15 players on this list, 12 will make the trip to China to play in the World Cup.

It'd be surprising to see Damian Lillard and Kyle Lowry opt to play. Lillard due to the load he carries on a year-to-year basis in Portland, and Lowry because he's getting up there in age and next season is a contract year for him. Kevin Love could be another player to back out due to his injury problems last year as well. 

The summer is a time for NBA players to rest up and prepare for the coming 82-game grind. While it's probably in the best interest for older players to get more rest, younger players are working out most days already. They might as well put their energy into game action that can help their development. 

As the roster continues to take shape before the start of training camp at the beginning of August, the FIBA World Cup may very well be must-watch TV for Celtics fans hoping to get a sneak-peak at their team's core group of players. 

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