Boston Celtics take Chaminade grad with third overall pick in NBA Draft
ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO – Jayson Tatum and one of his mentors, Bradley Beal, have held a lot in common over the years. Both came through Chaminade College Preparatory School in Creve Coeur, both starred internationally for USA Basketball as teenagers. Both earned Gatorade National Player of the Year honors. Thursday they added one more similarity: Tatum, like Beal before him, became the third pick in the first round of an NBA Draft, when the Celtics announced the selection Thursday night.
Beal was taken at No. 3 by the Washington Wizards in 2012 and was already kidding with his new Eastern Conference rival.
The Celtics won the first overall pick in the NBA Draft Lottery, but traded the pick to the Philadelphia 76ers as part of a larger trade that moved Boston down two spots in the first round.
A 6’8” forward with the playmaking skills of a guard, Tatum joins a team that made it to the Eastern Conference Finals this past season and was the rare contending team with a lottery pick because of a previous trade with the Brooklyn Nets. He averaged 16.8 points and 7.3 rebounds per game in his single season at Duke, where he grew into one of the best players in the country last spring after a slow start due to a foot injury in October.
Tatum joins a string of St. Louis area players to end up playing for the Celtics, joining fellow Chaminade alum David Lee, JoJo White, David Thirdkill, and Ed Macauley.
He told ESPN shortly after the announcement that “the feeling is just everything I’ve wished for and more,” adding that “it’s the best night ever.”