The Boston Celtics got into a heated altercation in the locker room following their late-game meltdown in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals vs. the Miami Heat.
The media reported that there was a lot of yelling going out of the locker room, with Marcus Smart calling his teammates out and even throwing some stuff around. Needless to say, the narrative of the Celtics' locker room collapse flooded the internet in a heartbeat.
But, far from collapsing, all that yelling motivated the Celtics to take a look in the mirror and go back to basics, pulling off a solid win in Game 3 to get back in the series and fight for a trip to the NBA Finals.
So, now that the air has cooled off a bit, Marcus Smart opened up about what truly happened that night, claiming that they're a family and all families fight:
“Yeah, you know we just got together and made sure that we were on the same page. We told each other that we love each other. It was me, Jaylen, Jayson [Tatum], Kemba [Walker], and Brad Stevens. You know, we just got together and made sure that what happened in the locker room was really in the locker room. It’s unfortunate that it got out, but it happened. Like I said, we’re a family. Families fight. I don’t expect anything less," Smart told Sam Amick of The Athletic.
Smart went on to add that he rathered players to go at each other's faces and just get it out of their system rather than holding it up and not doing anything about it:
“I expect that if a guy feels some way, then say it. I’d rather you say it than hold it in and let it come out too late. Like I said, it was electrifying for us to have it. It was something that probably we should have had a long time ago, but because we kind of just skated through we didn’t have to. And we knew eventually it was going to come up to bite us with the way we’d been playing, so it was something that needed to happen. Like I said, I love this group of guys. We all love each other. We all know that when any of us get emotional, there’s no malice and no bad intentions behind it. I think that’s kind of where and how we were all able to have the higher (outcome) because we all knew that it was coming from a great place," Smart concluded.
At the end of the day, it seems like this Celtics' team is pretty close together. That's one of the things that got them there, and a locker room fight isn't going to change that. It's just the heat of the moment, that's what the playoffs are all about.