Analyst prefers Nuggets' second option to Jayson Tatum, every Boston Celtics player in the clutch

Boston Celtics v Denver Nuggets
Boston Celtics v Denver Nuggets / Brendall O'Banon/Clarkson Creative/GettyImages

CBS Sports' Brad Botkin prefers the Denver Nuggets' second option, Jamal Murray, to Jayson Tatum and every single one of his Boston Celtics teammates in the clutch just days after the Cs lost 115-109 in the Mile High City to the defending champs on March 7.

"Jamal Murray is one of the most reliable clutch performers and toughest individual shot makers in the league," Botkin prefaced before saying, "If you're asking me to put my money on Murray or Jayson Tatum, or any other Celtics player for that matter, to make big shots down the stretch of big games, it's not even a debate. It's Murray."

Botkin added that the presence of two-time regular season MVP and 2023 Finals MVP Nikola Jokic makes the Nuggets the favorites in a prospective Finals matchup between Denver and Boston despite the Celtics holding the overall talent advantage.

"...if these two teams were to meet for the title in June, despite Boston being probably the more collectively talented team and having set the regular-season pace, this reliability of Jokic's late-game creation still makes Denver the team to beat," Botkin wrote.

Nikola Jokic could make Boston Celtics a tragic tail

Jokic could be on his way to inserting himself into the G.O.A.T. conversation alongside Michael Jordan and LeBron James as he continues to put up unfathomable stat-lines from the center position. Winning a second-straight championship with no other All-Star teammates would be something neither player, nor four-time champion and all-time shooter Steph Curry, could say he's done.

The fact that Jokic already has one such ring puts him in the cat bird seat to enter that G.O.A.T. conversation.

If Jokic's destiny is undeniable, the Celtics will become a tragic tale of assembling a super-team during the wrong era. The worst part? Not winning this June may cause this historically great Cs team to break up this summer.

No one man should have all that power. But Jokic has it.