Brad Stevens eschews the concept of team captains, preferring instead to empower each player to take on leadership responsibilities on their own. Nobody has embraced that concept quite like Marcus Smart has this year.
He’s the longest tenured Celtic and quickly acting like one of the most mature veterans.
Lately he’s been busy using some rare, early days off to build chemistry. That’s not just me putting buzzwords into his mouth. That’s actually his stated goal.
“Last year, for us, what was really big was the chemistry,” Smart reflected after Saturday night’s win in New York. “Some days we had it, some days we didn’t. So this year, I just wanted to make sure the chemistry was there, the bonds were there, and everybody was comfortable off the court with everybody. And I think the best way (to do that) is to be around each other as much as possible.”
First he organized a team viewing of the latest Terminator movie.
Then he arranged a prank on rookie Romeo Langford at a Chipotle.
Romeo thought it was just another trip to Chipotle…not when Marcus is the Manager. How would you react if you were charged $4,500 for Chipotle?! Welcome to the Celtics ROOK @yeahyeah22 @chipotletweets pic.twitter.com/a61vPLSYZY— marcus smart (@smart_MS3) October 29, 2019
I’ll bet they ended up charging it to Danny’s black card.
Keep up the great work Marcus. Combat muscles and grits.
Update: Jay King of the Athletic has an article covering this same subject. Here’s one of the key quotes.
“More than just talking, more than just showing,” Smart said. “I’m actually stopping to help guys learn and study and actually help put guys in more and more situations in the right spot. A lot of times last year I would let it go, saying, ‘OK, they will get it.’ But this year, more, it’s just if they don’t get it I’m trying to make sure they do understand.”