Marcus Smart’s Reaction to Celtics Trade Revealed: ‘Completely Shocked’

Marcus Smart, Boston Celtics

Getty Marcus Smart of the Boston Celtics reacts to a call against the Miami Heat.

Wednesday evening, the Boston Celtics took part in a major multi-team deal that saw them land former All-Star forward Kristaps Porzingis from the Washington Wizards. While this acquisition certainly helps bolster their lacking big man depth, there appear to be some mixed emotions regarding the blockbuster exchange.

Most notably, the decision to send beloved Celtics guard Marcus Smart to the Memphis Grizzlies in the transaction has left many in shambles, including the veteran himself as Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe revealed that Smart “was completely shocked” by the news and “is still trying to process it.”

“Marcus loves Boston. He thought he was going to retire there. He wanted to retire there,” Himmelsbach wrote.

Marcus Smart has spent all of his nine NBA seasons suiting up for the Celtics, and, since becoming the club’s full-time primary point guard back in 2021-22, has posted per-game averages of 11.8 points, 6.1 assists, 3.5 rebounds, and 1.6 steals.

Throughout his tenure in Boston he was selected to three All-Defensive teams and, in 2022, became the first guard since Gary Payton in 1996 to win the league’s Defensive Player of the Year award.

‘Strong Belief’ Celtics Aren’t Done Making Moves

Though the Kristaps Porzingis blockbuster certainly sent NBA Twitter into a frenzy, Heavy Sports NBA insider Steve Bulpett shared on Thursday afternoon that this transaction could be just the beginning of a potentially active offseason for the Celtics.

“As much as we feel a need to make assessments in the wake of the Marcus Smart/Kristaps Porzingis/and-don’t-forget-the-draft-picks trade, there is the strong belief around the NBA that Brad Stevens isn’t done reshaping the roster,” Bulpett said.

Perhaps the next move the Celtics could find themselves making is one that involves Grant Williams being sent packing. With the addition of Porzingis, some such as Adam Himmelsbach suggest that the 24-year-old impending free agent may now be quite expendable.

“According to multiple league sources, the completion of the Porzingis deal would likely mean that Grant Williams’s time in Boston has come to an end,” Himmelsbach wrote via his personal Twitter.

Prior to the KP deal, Tim Cato of The Athletic revealed that the Celtics had been contacted by the Dallas Mavericks in regard to a possible sign-and-trade scenario involving Williams, though noted that “the team might decide against an offer — something more than the mid-level exception — that would be large enough that Boston wouldn’t match.”

Celtics Likely to Sign Kristaps Porzingis to Extension

During the hours prior to the trade’s official agreement, NBA Insider Marc Stein revealed via his personal Twitter that such a trade likely will lead to the Celtics coming to an agreement on a contract extension with Kritaps Porzingis.

Following the finalization of the trade, Stein would further the notion that an extension between the two sides is still likely.

“In addition to the obvious chance to compete for a championship with the Celtics, there is a strong expectation already…that the Celtics will sign Porzingis to a two-year extension as soon as he becomes eligible for that deal in early July,” Stein wrote on his Substack.

Coming off his best campaign since being selected to the 2018 All-Star Game, through 65 contests played in 2022-23 Kristaps Porzingis posted impressive per-game averages of 23.2 points, 8.4 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 1.5 blocks while shooting 49.8% from the field and 38.5% from deep.

He now heads into 2023-24 attached to the final year of his current five-year, $158 million deal.