The Boston Celtics are entering a new NBA season in which they look revitalized after the fiasco the last term turned out to be. When everybody expected them to finally take advantage of the fact that LeBron wasn’t part of the East anymore, they couldn’t get the job done and were eliminated by Giannis Antetokounmpo and his Milwaukee Bucks, losing four straight games after winning the first one in the East semis.
A lot was said after the season was over for Boston, with Terry Rozier going on live TV blaming their teammates for the bad campaign they had. With the high expectations, the C’s had at the beginning of the season, it remains unclear what really happened that made this team a failure throughout the campaign.
Fortunately, Marcus Smart joined ESPN’s The Jump on Monday to discuss what really happened with Boston, giving a different insight than his former teammate Rozier.
Knowing that they are going to be rivals from now on, Smart took the time to defend his friend Kyrie Irving and explained why things didn’t work out last year.
“Let me make this be clear: we, not just me, the world, even Kyrie knows, he didn’t play up to the standard that he wanted to, but there’s four other guys out there with him, there’s a coach out there, we’re all supposed to be one team,” Smart said. “So you can’t put the blame on just one guy, because there’s things that everybody could have done better to not just help Kyrie, but help each other.
“And when you’re going in, especially when you’re trying to build that camaraderie, when you start singling guys out, it makes it really hard. And we’ve seen it inside the locker room and things like that, with guys calling guys out and it just wasn’t working for us. So for me, I just wanted to let people know that yes, we understand that Kyrie wasn’t up to Kyrie’s standard, but there’s four other guys, there’s a whole roster full of coaches, everybody participated.”
After that, Smart called his team a ‘dysfunctional’ one, explaining why things went downhill so fast.
“I mean let’s call a spade a spade, right? It’s true. We were dysfunctional,” he said.
“We actually liked each other,” Smart said. “Off the court, we actually hung out with each other. Things got on the court, it was just everybody was put in a situation trying to help the team the only way that they knew how. We got guys scoring the ball, that’s what they do. They don’t know anything else, that’s what they do, that’s how they made their name. And you’re asking guys to take a step back and not be themselves, and that was hard for a lot of guys. It’s hard for anybody to look at themselves in the mirror and sacrifice something, and that’s just what it was for us. Everybody was trying so hard to help the team, but they didn’t know what exactly to do.”
After all the rumors and speculation, Marcus gave a different point of view to this whole Celtics situation. Even though all the blame went towards Kyrie Irving at the end of the season, Smart has made sure to dismiss those comments.
Sometimes different styles of play don’t mix well on the court and according to him, that’s exactly what happened here. No matter how cool they all were off the court, when game time arrived things just weren't that good. Boston will start a new season hoping to turn things around with a refreshed roster.