‘I love the guys that we got’: Jayson Tatum refuses to talk about Kevin Durant, Jaylen Brown rumors

"I just go out there and play with my teammates. I don’t put that hat on to make decision."

Jayson Tatum
Jayson Tatum didn't want to talk about the Kevin Durant rumors on Tuesday. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Jayson Tatum knows how the rumor game works, and he had no intention of talking about the recent Kevin Durant reports on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters at the premiere of the Showtime movie Point Gods on Tuesday, the Celtics star said he “didn’t make anything” of Adrian Wojnarowski’s recent report on ESPN that the Celtics were involved in the Kevin Durant discussions. After all, as he put it, he just plays basketball.

“We got two new pieces,” Tatum said, per MassLive’s Brian Robb. “I love our team. I just go out there and play with my teammates. I don’t put that hat on to make decision.”


Tatum has been involved in trade discussions before — the Celtics seemed to suggest to the Pelicans during the catastrophic 2018-19 season that Tatum would be available if they waited until the offseason to trade Anthony Davis. The following summer, of course, Kyrie Irving signed with the Nets, Davis made it clear he had no intention of re-signing with the Celtics, and the Lakers put together a blockbuster package that had the dual effect of turning Tatum into the Celtics’ top-flight superstar.

Now, Tatum says, he knows to take every report with a grain of salt — including Shams Charania’s report on The Athletic that the Celtics offered Jaylen Brown, Derrick White, and a first-round pick to the Nets for Durant.

“I don’t believe everything I see on TV,” Tatum said, when asked about the Celtics potentially including Brown in discussions. “I’ve seen some [expletive] about me that was a lie. You never really know what is true and what’s not true.”

Tatum offered little in response to a question about playing with Durant.

“I’ve played with him during the Olympics,” Tatum said. “He’s a great player. That’s not my decision. I love our team. I love the guys that we got. I don’t know if that report is true or not.”


For his part, Brown still wants to be in Boston per the Athletic’s Jared Weiss. Citing sources close to Brown, Weiss wrote that the Celtics’ star was “perplexed” by a report from WEEI’s Jermaine Wiggins that he told Wiggins he didn’t plan to re-sign with the Celtics.

Keeping Tatum happy will be crucial for the Celtics over the next few years, which makes what he has to say about Durant’s status important. Tatum certainly respects Durant, but he and Brown seemed to be on good terms last season, and Tatum has complete autonomy on this iteration of the Celtics.

Durant might help the Celtics get closer to a title. He also might crowd Tatum’s elbow room a little bit, and he would shake up the balance of the Celtics significantly. “I love the guys that we got” is a not-insignificant endorsement.


This discussion has ended. Please join elsewhere on Boston.com