The Boston Celtics lost Game 1 of their NBA Playoff matchup against the Miami Heat after entering the locker room with an eight-point lead at the half. A third quarter collapse led to the Celtics' loss, which was unacceptable in the eyes of the team.
No one took the third quarter meltdown harder than Marcus Smart, who was helpless on the bench dealing with a foot sprain. Smart, whose return in Game 2 helped spark Boston to a resounding win, revealed what he said to the team when he was reaming them out, as reported by Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.
“It was devastating,” Smart told Yahoo Sports of that 39-14 third-quarter margin in which they compiled eight turnovers. “I actually got into the guys. I really chewed into them. They felt it and I felt bad for them because it's one thing to be out there with your guys and then another thing to not be playing and hearing me come at them the way I did. So for me, when I inserted myself back in for Game 2, I wanted to come back and show the guys what I meant by my words and with my actions. I’m showing them I got y'all backs.”
Smart “chewed into” the Celtics for what he saw as a “lack of toughness and attentiveness.” The hard-nosed guard said that he felt the need to back up his words when he returned in Game 2 against the Heat, to show “he had his Celtics teammates' backs.”
Not only that, but Smart also called out Jayson Tatum for some sloppy turnovers he had in the third quarter, imploring Boston's best player to be better.
The 2021-22 Defensive Player of the Year is not just a pivotal player on the court, but also a pivotal voice in the locker room for the Celtics in the NBA Playoffs.