Marcus Smart didn’t quite make it to the end of Sunday’s Boston Celtics-Orlando Magic matchup.
With 28 seconds remaining in an eventual 103-98 Magic win, Smart was ejected for elbowing Orlando’s Elfrid Payton in the face during a drive to the basket.
The infraction initially was deemed a common offensive foul, but the officials upgraded it upon video review to a flagrant 2, which carries with it an automatic ejection.
It was the first time the rookie point guard had been tossed from an NBA game and the second time a Celtics player had been ejected this season.
?I just saw I was attacking the basket,” Smart told reporters after the game. “I was making a basketball play to the rim. And then all of the sudden, I see the referee wave his hand and the offensive foul called. And then they go to the monitor, and the next thing I know, I?m getting ejected for a flagrant 2 foul on the offensive end.
“… I mean, yeah, I disagree. But like I said, they made the call.”
It’s rare to see an offensive foul result in an ejection, and there did appear to be some embellishment on Payton’s end. Celtics coach Brad Stevens told reporters after the game he had not yet seen video of the play, but that he trusted the referees’ judgement.
?I didn?t get a look at it,” Stevens said. “If they took the time to look at it, I?m sure they?re right, though.”
Smart recorded 16 points, five rebounds, two assists, five steals and one block before being sent off.
Thumbnail photo via Tommy Gilligan/USA TODAY Sports Images