Jayson Tatum Discusses His Role, Input in Celtics' Plans Amid 2022 NBA Free Agency

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVJuly 10, 2022

BOSTON, MA - JUNE 16: Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics talks to the media after the game against the Golden State Warriors during Game Six of the 2022 NBA Finals on June 16, 2022 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Annette Grant/NBAE via Getty Images)
Annette Grant/NBAE via Getty Images

Jayson Tatum is stepping into his starring role with the Boston Celtics both on the court and behind the scenes.

Tatum said he offered input to Celtics management on areas he hoped the team would improve during the 2022 offseason.

"We talked about that a little bit, just some guys who were free agents and what we felt like we needed for the team. ... I'm invested in being with the Celtics. Myself, [Jaylen Brown], [Marcus] Smart, whoever it is, giving our input in who can help us get over the hump next year," Tatum said.

A. Sherrod Blakely @ASherrodblakely

"I'm invested in being with the Celtics. Myself, JB, Smart, whoever it is, giving our input in who can help us get over the hump next year, things like that." - <a href="https://twitter.com/jaytatum0?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@jaytatum0</a> on the nature of his conversations with Brad Stevens prior to free agency this year. <a href="https://t.co/AMQovgN6JU">pic.twitter.com/AMQovgN6JU</a>

The Celtics have been active this offseason, making a trade for Malcolm Brogdon and signing Danilo Gallinari with their taxpayer midlevel exception. Adding Brogdon and Gallinari should instantly bolster a roster that's coming off an NBA Finals appearance and arguably makes the Celtics the favorites to repeat as Eastern Conference champions.

Boston's organizational structure has been impressive, with Brad Stevens taking instantly to his role as president of basketball operations after stepping away from coaching. Ime Udoka, who replaced Stevens as head coach, seemingly found the right recipe for motivating his players in the second half of the 2021-22 season and should have more to work with next year.

Meeting with star players and taking their suggestions—even if they're not always followed—is part of the organizational game in the modern, player-empowerment era. Tatum didn't seem like he was in a position demanding any moves, either, so things are apparently pretty harmonious behind the scenes in Boston.