By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
Back-to-back second-half collapses led to some flared tempers within the Boston locker room.
Celtics guard and leader Marcus Smart was involved in a shouting match, reportedly with Jaylen Brown, and reporters noted that it sounded like things were being thrown around the locker room. Marcus Smart stormed out of the room, screamed about “being on that bullshit,” and opted not to talk to the media. The Boston Globe’s Gary Washburn described the situation as a “team imploding.” It was even enough to prompt a team meeting from Brad Stevens.
But speaking after Saturday’s Game 3 victory over the Heat, which saw four C’s starters hit the 20-point mark, Brown offered his own take on the situation and its fallout.
“That it was probably blown out of proportion,” Brown said when asked what he could tell us about the incident. “Like, we are in a bubble. There’s a lot of grown men. There’s a lot of passion and emotion going on. But at the end of the day, we’re a family.”
This isn’t all that different from Brown said on Thursday when talking about the incident. While it wasn’t known that he was the one involved in the ‘altercation’ with Smart, Brown noted that Smart’s intensity is what the Celtics love about him, and that they needed to use that energy and turn it into something productive Game 3. (They did exactly that based on Saturday’s bully-ball approach that included 60 points in the paint, by the way.)
“Just took a bunch of good people committed to each other,” Stevens said of his team’s change from Game 2 to Game 3. “There’s no special talk, no special things, no rah-rah speeches. It’s who you have in the locker room and are they committed to each other. Everybody gets pushed to emotions in sports. That’s why I was curious to see what would happen tonight, but I didn’t have much doubt. I think this group has some good character.”
“We represent this organization, we represent each other and we won’t ever let anything come in between that,” said Brown. “We’ve got a tremendous opportunity and we understand that and nothing’s going to stop us from trying to maximize that.”
The Celtics will look to even their third-round series with the Heat at 2-2 next Wednesday night.