Boston Celtics Lose Marcus Smart


Many Boston Celtics fans finally got what they have been looking for as Isaiah Thomas was given the starting nod. Unfortunately, it was far from how they wanted Thomas to start. After a promising first few games Marcus Smart has a sprained toe and he missed the game against the Indiana Pacers.

Smart’s value on the defensive end can never be understated and he has been arguably the team’s strongest three point shooter to begin the season. Smart has been showing signs of taking the offensive step the Celtics have been hoping for but that development will be put on hold during this injury.

There is no definitive time table for Smart’s return but there are no indications that the injury is going to be serious. Hopefully the sprained toe will not have a long recovery period and the Celtics will get Smart back on the court in no time. They will certainly need him as the Pacers will be the weakest opponent the Celtics face over the next 5 games.

The only plus side to Smart being out of action is it finally gave the rookies an opportunity to get on the court. Both R.J Hunter and Terry Rozier received their first significant playing time of the season, but it was Hunter who kept getting minutes later on in the game.

Oct 22, 2015; Boston, MA, USA; New York Knicks guard Jerian Grant (13) tries to steal the ball from Boston Celtics guard R.J. Hunter (28) during the second half of the Boston Celtics 99-85 win over the New York Knicks at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

Rozier’s time on the court was brief as he finished with 6 minutes played but Stevens went to Hunter more often than previous regular rotation players. Hunter’s 13 minutes were more than both Tyler Zeller and Kelly Olynyk who have struggled tremendously to start the season.

Despite getting little playing time, Rozier was extremely active. His 5 rebounds in 6 minutes were better than 2 of the starters. Hunter only managed to score on one shot attempt but his presence appeared to lead to success as he had a team best +8 on the night.

Neither of the rookies did anything to indicate that they will be getting more playing time when Smart returns to action but they should have limited opportunities for the duration of his injury.

After falling to 1-3 on the season the Celtics are going to have to figure out their issues, with or without Smart. They have yet to have a strong offensive game and the defense has not been good enough to win them games.

More from Hardwood Houdini

Things will be a lot harder with Smart sidelined but Brad Stevens needs to figure out how to get the offense back on track and a potentially deadly shooter in R.J Hunter could eventually become a difference maker if Smart misses any more time.