The Boston Celtics’ offseason has been somewhat interesting in that they’ve been pretty inactive. Linked to Kawhi Leonard in trade talks, it seems that possibility has come to an end.
Boston also didn’t show much interest in pitching LeBron James in free agency and wasn’t linked to any other top-end players on the market.
Though, the most interesting aspect of the Celtics’ summer has been the Marcus Smart situation. A restricted free agent, the guard has yet to be offered a contract by the Celtics. Moreover, he’s reportedly frustrated by the lack of communication from general manager Danny Ainge.
“He loves the Celtics, but with these crickets he’s hearing, he’s hurt and disgusted by it,” a source close to Smart told Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald. ““He would have thought there would have been some kind of three- to four-year deal from them to show they’re interested. But the qualifying offer is the only one he has received, and there’s been no talk since free agency opened. He’s most disappointed that there has been no reaching out from their end.”
To be clear, the market has not been friendly to restricted free agents. Neither Clint Capela nor Jabari Parker have received a ton of interest. We can now include the 24-year-old Smart in that group.
The No. 6 overall pick of these Celtics back in 2014, Smart averaged 10.2 points, 3.5 rebounds and 4.8 assists per game last season. While his shooting (36 percent career mark) has been bad, he’s among the best perimeter defenders in the game.
Either Boston is going to have to offer Smart something of substance here soon or the team might simply be forced to renounce his rights, making him an unrestricted free agent.