The Boston Celtics beat was thrilled to see Marcus Smart honored as one of the TD Garden's "Hero Among Us" on February 4 for the C's battle with the Memphis Grizzlies; a contest No. 36 will be sidelined for after surgery on his finger.
"Very cool: The Celtics will honor Marcus Smart as tonight’s Hero Among Us for all of his work in the community over the years," tweeted The Athletic's Jay King. "His impact in Boston went far beyond basketball."
"Best way possible to honor Marcus Smart," The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor prefaced before saying, "Gonna be one hell of a standing ovation."
"To make sure there isn’t a dry eye in the house tonight, Marcus Smart will be honored as the 'Hero Among Us for his YGC Foundation and its work in the Boston community," The Boston Globe's Gary Washburn wrote.
Marcus Smart's charitable contributions to the city of Boston during his Boston Celtics tenure
A press release from the organization in support of the "Hero Among Us" honor did a great job recapping Smart's charitable contributions in Boston during his nine-year career in Celtics green.
“Smart would visit the Boston Children’s Hospital regularly throughout his time in Boston to spend one-on-one time with kids undergoing cancer treatments,” the team wrote in a press release (h/t Boston.com). “He also worked to donate mobile charging stations which included tablets and video game consoles called ‘Smart Carts’. These entertainment hubs were designed to serve as a form of communication and diversion during patients’ treatment and recovery.
“In 2017, Smart launched the YounGameChanger Foundation to serve as a source of guidance, motivation, encouragement, and empowerment for inner-city student-athletes to be GameChangers on and off the court or field. The YounGameChanger Foundation also aims to provide inspiration and life-changing experiences to pediatric cancer patients and their families. Since the organization’s launch, it has created opportunities through education, sports and mentorships with a special emphasis on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) experiences.”
Smart's return to the TD Garden on an opposing team will pale in comparison to his return to Boston as a member of the Celtics sometime in the future.