Both Adebayo and Tatum were selected in the 2017 NBA Draft, with Tatum the third overall selection by the Celtics. Adebayo was chosen 11 spots later by the Heat with the 14th overall pick.
In each case, the choice by the respective team has been a wise one, with Tatum elevating his overall game during the 2019-20 campaign.
Prior to the suspension of play on March 11, Tatum’s key statistical numbers had seen increases across the board, compared to those of his first two years with the Celtics. He was averaging 23.6 points, 7.1 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.4 steals per game before play was suspended.
The 22-year-old Tatum is making $7.83 million for the 2019-20 campaign and currently has a team option for $9.9 million next season.
Signing a max contract would significantly raise Tatum’ annual salary. However, there’s some question regarding how much the drop in revenues from the shutdown will affect the Celtics’ salary cap for next season.
Adebayo will be keeping a close eye on what takes place with Tatum, considering he’s also seen a major jump in production during his third NBA season.
As a starter for all 65 of the Heat’s games this season, Adebayo is averaging 16.2 points, 10.5 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 1.3 blocks and 1.2 steals per game.
The Heat could conceivably be looking to also extend a max deal for Adebayo, though their efforts to sign major free agents in the next few years could hamper any such negotiations. In addition, the Heat’s salary cap also figures to be reduced in the wake of the shutdown.
For now, both players should continue to deliver solid performances once they’re able to get back on the court.