Celtics may get Marcus Smart back at flawless time

Celtics may get Marcus Smart back at flawless time

Javier Howell
May 9, 2019

"As a team, I don't know where Milwaukee goes from here", Pierce said after Game 1. Prepare the right way.

The Celtics are speading the offensive load with Irving, Morris and Jaylen Brown all finishing the half with 11 points, Boston has 13 assists on 17 made field goals. They're making the paint look crowded whenever I'm driving or wherever I'm going on the court, seeing two or three bodies, sometimes four.

It is a scenario Irving has been in before - when he was playing alongside LeBron James with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016, and he and the Cavaliers came back from down 3-1 against the defending champion Golden State Warriors to win the National Basketball Association title. I mean, he shot 22 on the game.

Irving has acknowledged throughout the year, and did once more on Monday, that there's a delicate balance of getting his own shot versus getting his teammates involved.

The Celtics have missed Smart, who is the emotional leader of the team and who had his best season this year, as he shot career bests from the field (.422) and 3-point range (.364) while also arguably turning in an All-Defensive-team-worthy season.

Most of the speculation about Kyrie Irving's future has been: Will he resign with Boston or sign with the Knicks?

I'm not letting them off the hook. And just being more communicative.

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Nikola Mirotic #41 of the Milwaukee Bucks rebounds the ball against the Boston Celtics during Game Four of the Eastern Conference Semifinals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs on May 6, 2019 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.

But the crowd was back on its feet, chanting "Let's Go Celtics!" midway through the third, when Horford made a pair of baskets around a three-pointer by Tatum to cut the deficit to five, 91-86 with 7:19 to play.

A great start for the Boston Celtics, who matched the Bucks' intensity early to take an eight point lead after the first quarter. It happened with the series possibly ending in five games with a loss in Milwaukee on Wednesday, and it happened against the backdrop of Irving's impending free agency.

"Feeling good today", Smart said after taking part in Boston's practice.

"Yeah that was killer", Celtics coach Brad Stevens said. "It's the game of basketball".

If there's anyone on this team who can be a hero, however, Irving is certainly the obvious choice. "It's just slowing the (expletive) game down".

Irving and Durant become unrestricted free agents on July 1.