Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart almost won Game 4 against the Philadelphia 76ers. Keyword: Almost.
As every Celtics fan know, Smart's game-winning triple in overtime during Sunday's showdown came a second late. After James Harden drained a clutch triple to give the Sixers the 116-115 lead, Boston still had 19 seconds left to come up with one final play. However, the Beantown team wasted plenty of time before getting something going. Jayson Tatum started their final play with just five seconds remaining, and when he attacked the basket, he proceeded to pass the ball to Smart who was waiting at the 3-point line.
While Smart was able to make the shot that would have won them the game, it was too late as the buzzer had sounded at that point.
Speaking to reporters postgame, Smart admitted that it took them some time to get their players at the right spots. He also shared that they need to get better when it comes to time management since it's what eventually doomed them. For what it's worth, the Celtics' defensive guru also gave credit to the Sixers for their defense in the end, especially the placements of the players and the match-ups they had, per NBC Sports.
Marcus Smart talks final possession and why it took the C's longer than they wanted to get their shot off pic.twitter.com/4ptawwz72L
— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) May 7, 2023
Marcus Smart echoed the same sentiments that Celtics head coach Joe Mazzulla had following the Game 4 loss. Mazzulla noted that they did the right play, but the issue was their pace. They wasted too much time to get their final shot up, hence the loss.
It's definitely a costly defeat for the Celtics, with the playoff series now tied at 2-2. If they keep committing the same late-game mistakes, it will definitely be hard for them to repel the Sixers.