One of the bigger plotlines for the Boston Celtics during the offseason was whether they would pull the trigger on a trade for Kevin Durant. Not too long after Durant requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that the Celtics had called the Nets about a possible trade.
Nothing materialized, but Durant, a former MVP and future Hall of Famer, being available via trade over the summer was a hot topic and something fans should keep an eye on in case the Nets struggle this season.
In an interview with Graham Bensinger, Celtics superstar Jayson Tatum was asked if he would approve of the Celtics trading for Durant. Tatum answered in the affirmative but made it clear that the teammates he’d lose in the process would not make it easy.
“It would be good, and then it’s tough because, regardless of who you get on your team, anytime you lose a teammate, it’s tough. It’s like losing a friend, and you understand it’s the business of basketball. So anytime you have to acquire somebody, somebody has to leave,” Tatum said.
Tatum elaborated more on why it would be a difficult but necessary trade.
“Two things can be true at the same time. You can get better, but you don’t want to lose teammates. You don’t want to lose friends. Guys that I’ve been going to war with for five years.”
Durant is entering the first year of the four-year, $196 million contract extension he signed with the Nets.
Tatum Praised Durant’s Abilities and Work Ethic
In his interview with Bensinger, Tatum praised Durant’s abilities as a basketball player and made it a point that Durant was one of the players Tatum looked up to growing up, which is why he looked forward to playing with him on Team USA during the Olympics in 2021.
“Kevin Durant’s one of the best players ever. (He’s) somebody that I went to his elite camps when I was in high school. Somebody I really looked up to, and now we’re on the same team,” Tatum said.
Tatum mentioned that he studied Durant’s work ethic during their time together on Team USA to see how he has become the player he is.
“I pay attention to guys’ routines and their plan of attack every day. How they get ready. What they do before practice. What they do after practice. What they do for recovery because I can always steal little things from guys. That was something I really paid attention to him, and how hard he works. I can see why he is as good as he is.”
Stars Tatum Would Like to Play With
When asked if there was one star he would like to join forces with, Tatum said that he would like to play with someone he grew up with in St. Louis.
“I would love to play with Bradley Beal,” Tatum said. “I like the idea of it. I know it’s a lot of technical things and things that probably don’t make sense, and you can’t make it happen to have to do with money and things like that, but yeah.”
Tatum then brought up other stars that he would like to play with.
“Would I love to play with Brad Beal or LeBron or Steph Curry? These are guys I looked up to. That’s why you make the all-star game. Being on the same team as Embiid and LeBron and Anthony Davis and James Harden. You kind of get that during all-star weekend.”