Jrue Holiday’s Game 3 Heroics Triggered Undeserved Marcus Smart Slander

Marcus Smart

Getty After Jrue Holiday sealed the Celtics' Game 3 win over the Pacers, Marcus Smart was trending on social media.

Jrue Holiday wasn’t 100% during Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals. The Boston Celtics guard was listed as questionable with a non-Covid illness for the meeting with the Indiana Pacers, but gutted it out and made the start, playing 38 minutes.

While his stats weren’t eye-popping, it was Holiday’s late-game heroics that allowed Boston to take a 3-0 series lead with a 114-111 victory.

While Holiday got the glory, former Celtics guard Marcus Smart found himself trending on social media after the victory. Holiday, in his first year with the Celtics, took over for Smart, who was traded in the offseason in a deal that brought back Kristaps Porzingis. In the waning seconds of the victory, Holiday had a game-saving steal that had social media talking about Smart.

Marcus Smart Gets Unnecessary Heat After Jrue Holiday’s Game-Saving Steal

The Celtics found themselves down by as many as 18 points to the Pacers, who played without their star Tyrese Haliburton, who reaggravated a hamstring strain in Game 2. With 2:38 remaining, the Celtics trailed 109-101 but Holiday’s three-point play with 38.2 seconds left gave Boston a 112-111 lead.

After each team failed to score, the Pacers had a chance to take the lead in the final seconds. Andrew Nembhard, who led Indiana with 32 points while filling in for Haliburton, looked to go to the basket, but Holiday pick-pocketed him and was fouled down the other end wit 1.7 seconds left. His two free throws capped the scoring.

Holiday finished with 14 points, nine rebounds and three steals. While he got his well-deserved credit, Smart was back home as his name was thrown around all over social media.

“Marcus Smart would’ve been taking pull up 3’s with 19 seconds on the shot clock,” one X user posted.

“Thank you @Bucks for Jrue Holiday,” posted another X user. “I know for a fact Marcus Smart would of committed a foul.”

The hits to Smart kept coming.

“Marcus Smart held Celtics back,” another X user posted. “Watched every game for a decade & all the fighting Smart brought to locker room.”

“I never want to hear anyone reminisce about Marcus Smart ever again,” one post read. “What Jrue has done this series is infinitely better than anything Smart did for us in the playoffs.”

“Another game Celtics lose if Marcus Smart is on the team,” wrote another.

Smart Did Have His Share of Supporters After Holiday’s Steal

The Celtics selected Smart with the No. 6 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, and he quickly became a fan favorite in Boston. With his hard-nosed play and grit, Smart endeared himself to the Boston faithful.

Smart gave the Celtics a toughness they hadn’t seen in some time. His defense was top-notch and earned him NBA Defensive Player of the Year in the 2021-2022 season. While there was plenty of Smart bashing after the Game 3 Celtics win, he did have the support of some Celtics fans.

“We can appreciate everything Marcus Smart did for our team, acknowledge he helped the Celtics get back to winning consistently and, at the same time, recognize that the moves they made helped them take another step,” one fan wrote. “I will always fondly remember what Marcus did for our team.”

“Yeh I Don’t understand some Celtics fans,” one fan posted. “I love Marcus smart I always will and also Jrue is amazing.”

While there was plenty of Smart chatter, perhaps Adam Kaufman, host of “Celtics Beat,” put it best.

“Marcus Smart was a successful Celtic. Jrue Holiday is a successful Celtic,” Kaufman posted on X. “It’s weird some of you feel the need to put one down in order to lift the other.”

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