Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Tatum are both eligible for major extensions the next two summers but Shaquille O’Neal believes it’s time to split the gang up.
It would cost the Celtics around $613 million to retain both of the star players, who have crumbled in clutch time postseasons in recent years.
With looming salary cap restrictions, Shaq thinks a split would work, because keeping both the J’s will be viable for the C’s.
“Listen, I like both of those guys and I don’t want this answer to be taken the wrong way, but the business of any business is to make money,” Shaq said on The Big Podcast with Shaq. “I don’t know what the salary cap is, but obviously they are going to be over the salary cap and now I can’t get players around them. You’re going to need shooters, you’re going to need dogs, you’re going to need another veteran and you’re going to need to create a system to where it works.
“I don’t want five stars on my team. I want a guy that I can go to every night, I want a guy that’s going to lead, and I want three dogs, three others. I would prefer if they were specialists: one to be a shooter, one to be a rebounder, and one to be a fighter. I would, business-wise, break them up and use one of them to get the pieces I want. I will say Tatum is the number one, use Brown to bring in a Brown-type player, and then just do it like that.”
The franchise got close to winning their first chip since 2008 last year against the Warriors in the NBA Finals.
But dropped three consecutive games to give Golden State a championship.
This postseason, Tatum had some impressive performances but then shot 2-of-13 at two conference finals at home and turned the ball over six times in Game 1.
In Game 7 against the Heat, Tatum rolled his ankle on the first play, so Brown was left in charge but he fumbled the bag big time.
The shooting guard managed 19 points but had eight turnovers and shot 11.1 percent from three. In a Game 7.
Surely, these aren’t the kind of performances you want from $318M (Tatum) and $295M (Brown) players and a split seems to make sense.