if you come up with a reasonable way to get Jokic, let everyone know.Tatum + fillers for Jokic. Poison pill provision would be a problem. I bet both teams would say no.
Personally speaking, I'd do it for the C's. We'd probably have to make more moves to balance the roster, but imo Jokic is a top 5 player in the league. Worst case scenario, top 6. Never gonna happen obviously. Just saying.
I wouldn't do it, but not because the value isn't there - it is. And it would be a fit for the long-standing visions of both Ainge and Stevens to play through a big.
When Ainge became an executive with the Celtics he mentioned two offenses that he'd like to emulate: Sacramento and Minnesota. The Kings at that time were playing through Divac and/or Webber and the TWolves were playing through Garnett. And of course it was only a few seasons later that Garnett was doing that in Boston.
Olynyk and especially Al Horford were used in that role effectively later on, but Jokic is a cut above the rest, maybe above every big ever.
On the other hand that is not such a great role for Theis or Thompson.
All the same, I think that the franchise's best long-term practice is to avoid churn and drastic changes, unless they're forced. Is Tatum a top-10 NBA player? Good chance, and his future looks even better than his present. If he's 11th best, and Jokic is 5th (or however you rank them), I say that's not a good enough difference.
I'm uncomfortable with ranking players so specifically anyway. How a guy is used, fatigue and injury, decline, different variabilities in performance, a big measure of plain luck, and, not least, the method you use to rank players, all affect how your list sorts out; and the number differences are minuscule.
Add to that that you're comparing players who do vastly different things on the court (e.g., Jokic and Tatum), and those comparisons really don't seem possible - at least at the level of #3, #9, #21, etc.
Can you win a championship with Tatum? I'd say yes, of course you can.
So, what does Boston need to get to the Finals.
I'll say first that I'm a little disappointed in the question. As Celtics fans, isn't the question supposed to be, 'how do you win Championship 18?' But oh well.
I'm opposed to acquiring James Harden. His willingness to damage the Rockets with irresponsible and team-detrimental behavior cannot be acceptable to the Boston Celtics. It's team-first around here, in case you hadn't heard.
I'm not excited about potential Orlando Magic trade targets, either, since the price tags are inflated for the value return.
No doubt there are other trade targets possible, but more than anything Boston needs a guy who can push the ball up the floor quicker, get the ball anywhere he needs to off the dribble, and then make a play. They need Kemba Walker.
He's a brilliant pnr ballhandler, and if he returns fully healthy, Thompson and especially Daniel Theis will have their games open up.
I pushed back most of last season on the idea that Boston needed a scorer 'off the bench', since there weren't enough shots to go around as it was. But with Hayward gone and Kemba injured, the usage is overwhelmingly shifted to two players.
Tatum is at 30.9% and Brown is at 29.2%. Third among rotation players is Teague at 18.3%. While this might be sustainable, if those two have good luck with injuries, it's a poor recipe for a really effective offense and for a rested duo in the playoffs.
They need Kemba. His usage last year was between the two Jays at 27.2, and his turnover% was between them, too.
Boston needs to get to the line more. Kemba did more often per fga than either of the Jays.
They need Kemba. If his knee is going to fall apart every spring, then they need someone else like him.