While Marcus Smart missed out on being named the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year recently, he did receive recognition from the league for his standout defense Tuesday.
The Boston Celtics defensive anchor, Smart was named to the NBA’s All-Defensive First Team for the second year in a row. Smart had the least amount of voting points among the four other players who joined him on the first team, which included Giannis Antetokounmpo, Anthony Davis, Ben Simmons and Rudy Gobert.
Smart had the least voting points of the players on the first team, but made it comfortably over the next closest guard, Pat Bev. Smart and Beverly tied in DPOY voting. pic.twitter.com/C0CUFgqdR9— Jared Weiss (@JaredWeissNBA) September 8, 2020
Smart’s ability to be a defensive pest on the floor and ability to guard all five positions despite being a 6-foot-3 guard warranted his selection to the first team. According to Celtics stats, Smart is the first Celtics player to earn All-Defensive First Team honors in back-to-back seasons since Kevin Garnett did so in the 2007-08 and 2008-09 seasons.
Smart yet again proved to be in the upper echelon of the league’s defenders as he comfortably beat out Patrick Beverley and Eric Bledsoe to earn the first team nod. Rounding out the NBA’s All-Defensive Second Team with Beverley and Bledsoe were Bam Adebayo, Brook Lopez and Kawhi Leonard.
Jayson Tatum’s improvement on the defensive end this season was noticed as he received 20 second team votes while Jaylen Brown garnered two second team votes.