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    Boston Celtics coach Ime Udoka feels Marcus Smart made the difference in their Game 2 win over Miami Heat

    Boston Celtics Ime Udoka

    Basketball   |   May 20, 2022

     

    The Boston Celtics have been at their best this season when they have looked down and out. After a heartbreaking Game 1 defeat, the Celtics were determined to make a comeback in Game 2 in Miami at the FTX Arena. With Marcus Smart and Al Horford’s return, the Celtics got more bite in defence and got senior figures who infused calmness amidst the chaos.

    Therefore the Celtics won 127-102 as they ended an undefeated run for the Miami Heat at home in this year’s playoffs. The Heat were 7-0 up before this defeat as they will now travel to Boston for Game 3.

    Smart missed Game 1 with an ankle injury and the Celtics, despite having a good lead, gave it all away in the third quarter to lose the match as Jimmy Butler dropped a masterclass. In-Game 2 Butler once again dropped a 29 point match high performance but he hardly got any support from his teammates.

    But the star performer was surely Marcus Smart, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year who came out with a superlative show as he scored 24 points and got 12dimes and 9 rebounds. He was just a board away from a triple-double.

    Smart has been integral to this Celtics outfit as h played a big role in turning the season around for Ime Udoka’s men. The rookie coach also backs his point guard a lot as he admires the calmness that he brings and the way he leads this unit.

    Speaking about Smart’s terrific performance in Game 2 against the Heat, Udoka highlighted, “He sets the tone. Defensive Player of the Year for a reason. Ability to switch onto bigger bodies and just another good defender to throw at Butler and Adebayo and some of the guys I have to worry about. He brings the physicality every night, kind of gets everybody in line”

    Despite the Celtics having All-Star level players like Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown along with the experience of Al Horford, Marcus Smart is the force that drives this Celtics team forward. He has that relentless mentality to never give up which energizes other players aswell on the court as they also give their all. So his fitness and good health will be important for the Boston Celtics as they return to the TD Garden for the next game in the Eastern Conference Finals.

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