Marcus Smart knew everything was going to be alright after he got approval from Kevin Garnett.
Smart and Garnett never were teammates on the Celtics, but came face-to-face with one another during the 2014-15 preseason opener when Boston took on the Brooklyn Nets.
To no one’s surprise, Smart dove for the ball as it was headed toward the bench. Smart’s hustle and defense led to a breakaway for Boston. Garnett took notice and even made sure to make Smart aware, something the former Celtic never did much of with rookies throughout his career.
?My first game, against the Nets, I dove on a ball in front of our bench and threw it up to Jeff Green for the wide open dunk,? Smart said Friday, per MassLive’s Tom Westerholm. ?Kevin Garnett tapped me on my back and said good job. I knew I was gonna be all right in this league.?
Well, Smart certainly has made his mark on the Celtics for his gritty defense and willingness to put his body on the line over the years. And now we know he had Garnett’s respect from his very first game.