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Celtics guard Marcus Smart (quad) expected back for Game 3

May 1, 2022; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart (36) is hurt during a play against Milwaukee Bucks guard Pat Connaughton (24) in the second quarter during game one of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Looking to take a lead in their Eastern Conference semifinals series, the Boston Celtics are prepared for the “strong likelihood” Marcus Smart will be available for Game 3 on Saturday.

The NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year was not available for Tuesday’s 109-86 Game 2 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks at home because of a right quad contusion. Boston’s victory tied the series at a game each.

“We’ll know more tomorrow based on how it feels today,” Celtics head coach Ime Udoka said Thursday. “But obviously looks better today than he did. Just moving around, walking around the last few days when he couldn’t go. We’ll know more tomorrow.”

Smart, 28, averaged 12.1 points with 5.9 assists in 71 games this season. He also was a key reason Boston held opponents to 104.5 points per game in the regular season to lead the NBA.

“My guys know, anybody who knows me understands that if I’m gonna miss a game, especially a playoff game, something’s really gotta be really wrong,” Smart said.

–Field Level Media