Marcus Smart
Marcus Smart
26-Year-Old GuardG
Boston Celtics
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Smart comes into the new season with more clarity in the Celtics' backcourt than he's had in three seasons. With Kyrie Irving and Terry Rozier no longer on the roster, Smart has a strong opportunity to start at the two-guard next to Kemba Walker. Known for his nagging defense, Smart recorded a career-high 2.0 combined blocks/steals per game in 2018-19 and finished third in the NBA in total steals en route to his first All-Defensive Team selection. He's recorded at least 1.7 combined blocks/steals in all five seasons in his career, and it's fair to expect that level of production to continue in 2019-20. Though Smart produced a four-year low in points (8.9), he improved his efficiency tremendously with career highs in field goal percentage (42.2) and three-point percentage (36.4). Smart has also averaged 3.9 assists and 3.6 rebounds in his career, and those numbers could see a bump in 2019-20 without Irving and Rozier. The defensive production should remain elite this season, but Smart's true value lies in his ability to continue improving his shooting. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a four-year, $52 million contract with the Celtics in July of 2018.
Personal Bio

Marcus Smart was born March 6, 1994 in Flower Mound, Texas, and is the youngest of four sons of Camellia Smart and Billy Frank Smart. Smart played competitive football until the sixth grade and enjoys playing tennis. During his college days at Oklahoma State, he was also a member of the 2014 USA Select Team that practiced against Team USA in preparation for the 2014 FIBA World Championship. Smart was also a member of the U19 Team USA squad that won the gold medal during the 2013 FIBA U19 World Championships. During his professional career, Smart founded the YounGameChanger Foundation to, in the words of the foundation, "provide families with seriously and chronically ill children with encouragement and life-changing experiences and to be a voice of motivation, empowerment and encouragement to inner city young athletes to be game changers off the court or field." Learn more about the foundation and Smart's annual Bowling Bash at marcussmart.org. Follow Smart on Twitter @smart_MS3, on Instagram @youngamechanger and on Facebook @MarcusSmartOfficial.

College/International Summary

For two seasons, Marcus Smart was a fierce leader for Oklahoma State University. During his freshman year (2012-13) he earned a slew of awards. Smart received the Itegris Wayman Tysdale Award, presented by the USBWA to the nations top freshman. He was Second Team All-American, Sporting News' National Freshman of the Year, Big 12 Player of the Year and received many other accolades. His 99 steals tied the OSU single-season record. Overall, Smart delivered 15.4 points, 5.8 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 3.0 steals across 34 minutes per game. He would deliver similar stats his sophomore season, while improving his shot percentage from 47 to 51 percent. He was named to both the All-Big 12 First Team and Big 12 All-Defensive Team. During both of Smart's seasons at OSU, the Cowboys would qualify for the NCAA Tournament and lose in the second round.

Cleared of coronavirus
GBoston Celtics
March 29, 2020
Smart has been cleared from the coronavirus since Friday, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
Smart took to his personal Twitter account Sunday night to announce that he was cleared by the Massachusetts Department of Health on Friday. This is, of course, great news for Smart and the Celtics, but it remains very much unclear when we may see the defensive-minded guard on the court again.
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Past Season Summaries
2014

After being selected 6th overall in the 2014 NBA Draft, Marcus Smart experienced typical rookie highs and lows for the Celtics. On the positive side, he demonstrated a feisty defensive approach and deft passing skills. In February, he was named Rookie of the Month and at the end of the season he made the All-Rookie 2nd Team. On the negative side, Smart struggled with his jump shot and fought through Achilles and ankle injuries, appearing in 67 games. When available, Smart and Avery Bradley made for a lethal defensive backcourt, giving head coach Brad Stevens lots of opportunities to frustrate opponents. But Smart struggled offensively, shooting 37 percent from the field, 34 percent from three land, and 65 percent from the free-throw line. On December 8th, Smart scored a 23 points along with four rebounds, five assists and two steals in a loss at Washington. On March 18th, Smart produced a monster game in a loss to the Thunder, delivering a career-high 25 points, plus nine boards, five assists, two steals and two blocks. Smart's Celtics finished the year at 40-42, but made the playoffs. Boston was quickly swept by the Cavaliers in the first round.

2015

Smart's sophomore season in the Association got off to a bumpy start when he dislocated two fingers on his right hand during Summer League play. The Oklahoma State product then missed 21 games, including 18 in a row from November 22 to December 27, while recovering from a lower-leg injury. Smart went on to play in the Celtics' final 52 contests. Smart scored 15 points or more points in twelve games, including two season-high games of 26 points. When healthy, Smart's tenacious defense kept him firmly in coach Brad Stevens' deep rotation. Unfortunately, Smart's shooting actually declined. His field goal percentage dipped from 37% as a rookie to 35% this past season. Despite usually coming off the bench, Smart played in 27 minutes per contest, fifth highest on the team. Boston finished 48-34 and were swept by the Hawks in the first round of the playoffs. Smart averaged 12.0 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.7 steals through the four playoff losses.

2016

Marcs Smart finished his third NBA season having collected 125 steals. The thefts ranked 12th in the NBA and highlighted Smart's tenacious defense, which Boston has come to rely on since early in Smart's rookie season. Smart appeared in 79 games with 24 starts. The Oklahoma State product was the ultimate sixth man for Boston, backing up both Isaiah Thomas and Avery Bradley in the backcourt, as well as Jae Crowder at small forward. Smart's versatility proved very helpful to Boston, leading the team in steals, and finishing second in assists and free throw percentage. Of concern was Smart's accuracy, as he finished the season shooting 36 percent from the field and 28 percent from behind the arc. Smart's Celtics finished at 53-29, the best record in the Eastern Conference. Boston defeated the Bulls and then the Wizards in the first two rounds of the playoffs. In Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals, Smart replaced an injured Thomas in the starting lineup versus a Cavalier club that was up 2-0. Smart drained seven three pointers and scored 27 points to help beat Cleveland. But the C's would lose the ECF in five games.

2017

Marcus Smart finished his fourth season in the NBA with stats similar to those produced during his first three seasons. The tenacious guard defended with passion and grit, but struggled with his shooting accuracy. For the fourth season in a row, Smart shot below 37% from the field. That said, the box score has never accurately portrayed Smart's value to the Celtics. Coach Brad Stevens relied, once again, on Smart's ability to defend multiple positions and also serve as the primary back-up point guard. Smarts distribution skills were again on display, as he trailed only Kyrie Irving with 4.8 assists per game, a career high. On November 27th, Smart scored a season-high 23 points in a loss to the Pistons. In late January, Smart suffered a hand abrasion that forced the veteran to miss 11 games. Then, on March 16th, a torn ligament in his right thumb forced him to miss the rest of the season and four playoff games. The two injuries forced Smart to appear in only 54 games, his lowest career total. During the playoffs, Smart and Terry Rozier filled in admirably for an injured Kyrie Irving, helping Boston reach the Eastern Conference Finals, ultimately losing in seven games to the Cavaliers.

2018

For the first time in Marcus Smart's NBA career, Smart finished the season shooting over 42 percent from the field. The improvement was significant considering Smart shot 36 percent from the field over his first four NBA seasons. No one has ever questioned Smart's superior defensive effort. That effort was finally recognized this season, as Smart was named to the All-Defensive First Team, his first such award. His career-high 143 steals (1.8 per game) ranked third in the Association. Smart also played in a career-high 80 games. He was a starter in 60 of those contests which was also, by far, a career high. Smart scored 20-plus points four times during the season. In a Jan. 28 win over the Nets, Smart exploded for 21 points, seven assists, five steals and two blocks. Smart's Celtics finished at 49-33, beat the Pacers in the first round of the playoffs, but then lost in five games to the Bucks in the second round.

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Transaction History
  • June 26, 2014
    Drafted by the Boston Celtics in the 1st round (6th pick) of the 2014 NBA Draft.
  • July 5, 2014
    Signed a rookie two-year contract with the Boston Celtics. Contract includes club options for a third and fourth season.
  • July 19, 2018
    Signed, as a free agent, a four-year agreement with the Boston Celtics.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
After a lengthy restricted free agency stand-off, Smart and his feisty defense are staying in Boston. The versatile defender signed a four-year contract in July to stay with the team that drafted him sixth overall back in 2014. While Boston retained its most versatile defender, Smart's return further complicates what was already going to be a logjam in the backcourt and on the wing. Smart can play the point, shooting guard or small forward, but opportunities at all three positions will be hotly contested. At point guard, Boston expects a full -season out of Kyrie Irving, after losing him in March to a knee injury. While Irving was out, Terry Rozier, who's set to hit free agency next summer, proved worthy of starter's minutes. Jaylen Brown, Gordon Hayward and Jayson Tatum will each command significant roles on the wing, so it seems inevitable that Smart’s minutes will take a bit of a dip in 2018-19. The hope is that Smart will finally demonstrate some meaningful improvement as a jump-shooter, though at this point that may be wishful thinking. The four-year veteran is shooting 36 percent from the field for his career, with few indications of improvement. Poor shooting aside, Smart led Boston in steals per game last season, as well as assists per minute.
Over Smart’s first three years in the Association, no one has ever questioned his defensive ferocity. The problem is his shooting. It was assumed that Smart would improve from the 37 percent effort that occurred his rookie season. Unfortunately, Smart’s shooting has actually gotten worse. After struggling to shoot 35 percent during his sophomore season, Smart posted a meager 36 percent in 2016-17. Still, Coach Brad Stevens continued to stress Smart’s game changing defensive plays, increasing his floor time to 30.0 minutes per game in 2016-17. The guard’s 4.6 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.2 threes made per game (last year’s stats) certainly make his poor shooting more tolerable. And with Avery Bradley now in Detroit, Smart has the opportunity to battle Jaylen Brown for the starting shooting guard spot. Smart currently sits atop the shooting guard depth chart due to seniority, but much can change throughout the preseason. Coach Stevens likes going small with Smart off the bench, asking Smart to shut down opposing small forwards. Stevens would lose that defensive bench flexibility with Smart in the starting lineup. With Jae Crowder now in Cleveland, expect Smart’s defensive shutdown assignments to increase. Either as a starter or sixth man, expect Smart’s minutes to stay the course. And expect similar shooting woes, too.
After an up-and-down rookie season, Smart followed up with much of the same in 2015-16. The former lottery pick struggled mightily as a shooter, converting just 34.8 percent of his attempts from the field and a horrific 25.3 percent from three-point land. Even so, his tenacious defense and relentless attacking ability kept him firmly in coach Brad Stevens' deep rotation, when healthy. Smart missed 21 games, including 18 in a row from Nov. 22 to Dec. 27 while recovering from a lower-leg injury, but played in the Celtics' final 52 contests. Smart began the year as a starter but played exclusively off the bench after returning from injury. His role wasn't greatly impacted, however, as he saw at least 20 minutes in every game after Dec. 31. The 22-year-old remains a foundational piece in a still-developing Celtics backcourt, but he simply must improve his shooting efficiency to mount a serious challenge to Avery Bradley for the starting shooting guard spot. With Evan Turner now in Portland, Smart projects to serve as the Celtics' versatile sixth man, vacillating between both guard spots depending on need.
As a rookie in 2014-15, Smart struggled through Achilles and ankle injuries to play in 67 games, averaging 7.8 points, 3.1 assists, 1.5 steals, and 1.4 three-pointers per game. When available, Smart and Avery Bradley made for a lethal defensive backcourt, giving head coach Brad Stevens lots of opportunities to frustrate opponents, but Smart struggled offensively, shooting only 37 percent from the field, 34 percent from three land, and 65 percent from the free-throw line. The Celtics would clearly like to improve on Smart's 27 minutes per game, but that will be difficult with 2015 first-round picks Terry Rozier and R. J. Hunter also needing backcourt minutes to develop. Plus, the C's desperately need Isaiah Thomas' scoring. Evan Turner also proved last year that he can play both backcourt positions. Smart's aggressive defensive style leads to injuries, as demonstrated by the two fingers he dislocated during the Las Vegas Summer League. GM Danny Ainge's constant collecting of assets will eventually result in a trade that will shuffle the roster, which could further improve Smart's opportunities to play. Smart, the sixth pick of the 2014 draft, clearly has loads of potential. But there are too many obstacles in his path to predict a breakout sophomore season.
Smart is viewed as a combo guard with a primary focus as a point guard. If the Celtics drafted him to be a shooting guard, he'll need to improve in one significant area – his shooting. The sixth-overall pick in the draft shot just 29 percent during the summer league. While he managed to make 42 percent of his shots at Oklahoma State, much of that was due to Smart's ability to get to the rim. He made just 28 percent of his jump shots in the half-court offense. Smart is well-built and uses his body to create opportunities for himself, particularly on the drive. He averaged more than eight free-throw attempts per game for the Cowboys last season. Smart's also considered one of the top perimeter defenders coming out of college this year, a trait that pleases coach Brad Stevens. The coach has talked about establishing a "defensive DNA" for his team, and Smart fits that profile. He now joins a Celtics team that's got an elite point guard in Rajon Rondo and just signed its shooting guard, Avery Bradley, to a four-year contract. Initially, it looks like Smart will back up both guard spots. However, there's potential for an increased role later in the season, particularly if Boston trades Rondo, who is in the final year of his contract before hitting unrestricted free agency.
More Fantasy News
Recovering well from coronavirus
GBoston Celtics
Illness
March 29, 2020
Celtics coach Brad Stevens relayed Friday that Smart (illness) is doing well following his positive test for the coronavirus a week earlier, Tim Bontemps of ESPN.com reports. "Great. He's great. Great spirits. Joking as always," Stevens said.
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Tests positive for COVID-19
GBoston Celtics
Illness
March 19, 2020
Smart revealed Thursday that he has tested positive for COVID-19.
ANALYSIS
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Goes for 29 points
GBoston Celtics
March 7, 2020
Smart went for 29 points (9-23 FG, 6-15 3Pt, 5-6 FT), three rebounds, one assist, one steal and one block in 37 minutes during Friday's 99-94 loss against the Jazz.
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Scores 18 points in win
GBoston Celtics
March 4, 2020
Smart recorded 18 points (5-15 FG, 0-5 3Pt, 8-8 FT), two rebounds, two assists and two steals in 32 minutes in Wednesday's 112-106 win versus the Cavaliers.
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Posts double-double
GBoston Celtics
March 4, 2020
Smart registered 14 points (5-15 FG, 4-14 3Pt), 10 assists, six rebounds, two steals and two blocks in 36 minutes during Tuesday's 129-120 loss to the Nets.
ANALYSIS
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