The Boston Celtics lost again to the Miami Heat on Friday (AEST), digging an 0-2 hole in the Eastern Conference finals.
Celtics guard Marcus Smart did not respond well.
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According to multiple reports, the Celtics guard cussed and screamed in the postgame locker room, noise that was heard from the outside corridor.
The Boston Globe’s Gary Washburn reports that Smart screamed “y’all on that bulls***.”
ESPN’s Malika Andrews reports that the Smart continued to cuss as he exited the locker room.
Marcus Smart is screaming in the #Celtics locker room and there is a bunch of arguing going on. Smart comes out say “y’all on that bullshit!” Team is imploding. Smart is in bathroom and there is still screaming coming from locker room.— gary washburn (@GwashburnGlobe) September 18, 2020
Marcus Smart is screaming at someone in the Celtics locker room — or several people. The yelling continues as Smart exits the locker room, swearing.— Malika Andrews (@malika_andrews) September 18, 2020
Smart declined to speak with media. Washburn said that items were thrown and described what he called a “raucous” scene, while Andrews described hearing “loud clanks.”
Washburn then reported that the Celtics won’t practice on Friday.
Celtics guard Kemba Walker downplayed the reports in his postgame news conference.
“It was nothing,” Walker said. “It was nothing. I ain’t got much to speak on about it.”
Head coach Brad Stevens also declined to expound.
“Guys were emotional after a hard game — hard loss,” Stevens said, per Andrews.
The 106-101 loss was the second straight for the Celtics after leading the Heat late in the fourth quarter. Boston rallied from a seven-point deficit to start the final on stanza to take a 95-93 lead with 3:17 remaining. But the Heat turned on the pressure late for a second straight game to outscore the Celtics 13-6 the rest of the way.
On Tuesday, Boston blew a 13-point fourth-quarter lead before losing in overtime, 117-114.
After two-plus months in the bubble and a pair of frustrating, high stakes losses, things appear to be boiling over behind closed doors.
Whatever happened, the Celtics are maintaining a united front outside the locker room.
Boston Celtics downplay fiery NBA scenes
Walker and coach Stevens weren’t the only key Celtics figures to downplay the heated post-game scenes, with star wing Jaylen Brown also keen to put the situation in context.
“In families, there’s ups and downs, fights and emotions,” he said.
“But that’s exactly what we are, a family. We’re going to hold each other accountable.”
Big man Enes Kanter, who signed with the team at the beginning of the season after a good playoff run with the Portland Trailblazers last year, also weighed in on the situation on Twitter.
“Too many bullsh*t rumours out there, this group of guys is one of the best I’ve been around,” he wrote on Twitter.
“No one can split our family up. Keep fighting & grinding.”
With Yahoo Sport Australia