It seems like the Boston Celtics & Marcus Smart have fallen so far away than what they were trying to become. With their current lineup, the Celtics seem to have a backcourt problem. And the play of Marcus Smart this season has not been all that great. Even though his averages of 12.9ppg and 4.9apg last year to 13.1ppg and 6.1apg this year may look like an improvement – the team is far from being as good as they looked last season.
The Boston Celtics run a slower paced half court offense to try and maximize the basketball abilities of the former Oklahoma State guard. But, it gets abused and exposed when the top teams have had time to scout the game of the 26 year old. Smart was never known for being a top notch shooter, and has been known for being a good all around and gritty player – but as far as leading the team at the PG position.
They need to reevaluate some things.
There isn’t a whole bunch that Boston can do against teams that can speed up the game, and force him to drive to the bucket.
At this point, the thoughts of him becoming a 16-17 ppg and hitting 45-47% from the field guy is long over.
It’s time to be honest and take a look at what has gone wrong. I think that the 6-3 guard is certainly capable of winning a championship with the Celtics team, but something has to change. A huge question is, do the Boston Celtics fans still believe in Marcus Smart as their PG? I think the expectations for Marcus have changed, after his seasons of overall very middling play.
The truly special PGs have the awesome ability to dribble, as well as run a pinpoint fast break. More to the likes of a De’Aaron Fox or Trae Young, both spectacular young PGs. If Smart wants to be viewed as the court general for Boston, he needs to get better command on the court – as Smart seems to struggle with dictating the types of shots that he wants to get. Teams know he can’t drive well, so they just try to push him to the paint. Knowing he also can’t jack it up well from deep, and yet can’t score buckets inside steadily. It’s pretty basic, if a PG is afraid to drive to the rack it takes a lot away. Marcus is a guy who looks to his teammates 1st, with a good eye, as his 6.1apg and his passing improvement shows. But he cannot pick apart the defense by drawing out defenses, his 39% shooting is terrible and his 31% from deep is worse. He desperately needs to get that aspect to his game, because the Celtics desperately need it. Smart still hasn’t gotten down a steady drive to the rim, or get a shot from behind the arc. His 5.3 three point FGA verifies that he seemingly still has the greenlight to chuck it from deep, which I just don’t quite understand. This is a guy who should be sparingly popping one here and there, not at the rate he has been.
He wants to be the PG that controls the team, but he’s shown that he can’t.
At least at the PG position.
Boston has their share of star players, Jason Tatum and Jaylen Brown, in particular. Maybe moving them around would be better for them?
Maybe Marcus should primarily move to the SG spot for Boston Celtics – hear me out. Because Smart can hit the jumper from 10-18′ – his scoring wouldn’t be a complete disaster there, and I think his passing would be extraordinary at that spot. Let’s be honest, a player can be only as good as the role that he is playing in. Maybe it would be better to move Marcus to a different position, maybe that would help – I think Smart would be better for the Celtics at the SG spot, than at PG. Keep Kemba Walker at PG, Smart at SG – let Kemba be the decision maker, because even though he is 30 and hasn’t been 100%, his game to the cup, has shown to be far better than Smart’s.
Marcus playing more at SG could actually make his defense even better – if he wasn’t the focal point in regards to ball handling and ball movement – I think it would give him more time to get into position, and then he could concentrate on his scrappy defense even more. Again, the 220 G isn’t a bad player by any means, I like him and I really like his tough style. I think he is also a great guy to have on your side as a teammate. But, I think he has a higher ceiling if he was coming off screens and popping from 15′ more – than as a PG who initiates the offense every play.