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Marcus Smart feels Celtics did him dirty with trade

Marcus Smart stares ahead

Aug 4, 2020; Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA; Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart (36) warms up before the first half of a NBA basketball game at the Visa Athletic Center in the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Marcus Smart was perhaps the most beloved player on the Boston Celtics, but he does not think that the organization treated him accordingly.

The Memphis Grizzlies guard Smart spoke this week to Jared Weiss of The Athletic on the eve of the NBA season tipping off. Smart discussed his old team, the Celtics, and indicated that he wasn’t happy with how they were supposedly not upfront with him when they traded him to the Grizzlies.

“You always want to be where you’re wanted, and another team’s trash is another team’s gold,” said Smart. “So I’m glad to be here [with Memphis]. I’m glad to be on an organization that wants me and sees me [as] great value. So I’m ecstatic and I’m ready to get going.

“If I’m being quite frank, I knew I would be traded [by Boston] eventually,” Smart continued. “Just figured it would be the next season, just based off my contract and the new CBA. We already knew that. But it was just the way it happened. I was told everything was good after asking multiple times. Like, [I told the Celtics], ‘I’m hearing [rumors], what’s going on?’ And they’re like, ‘No, you’re good, you’re good, you’re good.’ Then when I do hear about the trade, it’s from Shams [Charania] on Twitter before I hear from the team.”

You can read Smart’s full interview with The Athletic, which also features a preview of the upcoming Memphis season, here.

For context, Smart was dealt to the Grizzlies in June as part of a three-team trade that sent Kristaps Porzingis to the Celtics. The original framework of the trade had the LA Clippers involved instead of the Grizzlies (with Celtics guard Malcolm Brogdon being the one headed out of town). But that agreed-upon trade fell apart due to an issue with Brogdon’s health. That opened the door for the Grizzlies to enter the picture and acquire Smart to complete the Porzingis deal.

Reports at the time did indicate that Smart, a beloved lifelong Celtic who became only the second Defensive Player of the Year winner in franchise history (after Kevin Garnett in 2008), was completely shocked by the trade. But sudden and unceremonious trades of franchise favorites are not all that uncommon for Boston after all.

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