Skip to main content

Like Dave Cowens before him, will Marcus Smart's ferocious play shorten his career?

The Celtics Marcus Smart plays only one way - all out. His Boston teammates and fans love him for it, but it may have a price down the road. Diving on the floor for loose balls - taking charges - battling much-bigger opponents under the hoop. It all takes a toll, and Marcus is once again out of action for tonight's contest versus the Miami Heat with an abdominal contusion and assorted other injuries.


Dave Cowens followed a similar path five decades ago when he came into the League in 1970. At just under 6'9", he battled much bigger centers and backed down to no one. And he took a beating doing so. His NBA career only lasted 11 seasons, and he had this to say upon his retirement from the Celtics (per Wikipedia):

"I have sprained my ankle at least 30 times over the duration of my career, broken both legs and fractured a foot," Cowens said upon retiring. "Two years ago, a team of foot and bone specialists said they were amazed that I could play up to that point without sustaining serious injuries."


Dave came out of retirement to play one more season with the Milwaukee Bucks but retired for good after the lone season there. He sustained an injury in the last game of the regular season and did not participate in the playoffs.

Smart has the same bulldog mentality on the hardwood, and his injuries keep piling up. Marcus is now in his sixth NBA season, and he has yet to miss a game this year. That should change tonight as he recovers from an oblique contusion and a cold-like illness. Often called the heart and soul of his team, Smart simply fills any role offered to him, and many that are not. He does it all without complaint. Here's hoping Marcus plays as long as he wishes with no series of injuries shortening a career that gets brighter every season.

Follow Tom at @CelticsSentinel, @CausewayStreet and Facebook

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Sign the Petition! Let's honor Tommy Heinsohn

  No longtime Celtics fan can watch games this year without a somewhat heavy heart. For the last 50 plus years, we have been blessed as a franchise to have Tommy Heinsohn, Mr. Celtic himself, as a part of the organization. Whether it be as a player, coach, or commentator, Tommy has been an instrumental figure for the green, and his presence is missed on every broadcast. Nobody embodied what it meant to be a Celtic more than Tommy, and I know I miss his energy and ferocity every time Scal claims the refs "made the right call" against the Cs. While Tommy obviously belongs on the Mount Rushmore of Celtics, he is often overlooked in his place among the greats of NBA history. Looking back upon his life, one would be hard pressed to find someone with a bigger impact on NBA basketball than Mr. Celtic. For those who are unfamiliar, let's do a quick review. Tommy is one of 2 people to be inducted into the Hall of Fame as both a player and coach (the other being the indomitable Len

We may be glad Danny Ainge rolled the dice on Theis

Frankly, I was not sure if Danny Ainge would ink Daniel Theis to a new deal, but it looks like a good move. Theis is signed for two years at a total of $10 million, with the second year non-guaranteed. With the departure of big men Al Horford and Aron Baynes, rolling the dice on Theis could work very well. In his first season in Boston, Daniel just kept improving. For the pre-All-Star stretch, he averaged 14.5 minutes/Game, 5.0 PPG, 4.7 RPG while shooting 52% on field goals and 30% on treys. Post-All-Star his minutes increased to 18.4 per game, his points to 7.8/game and his boards to 5.3/game. And he shot 68% on field goals and 40% on 3-pointers. Then a meniscus tear shut him down. His minutes and production took a hit last season, in part most likely due to lagging recovery from the injury. Right now he is playing on German's entry in the FIBA World Cup. In a game versus The Czech Rebublic, he scored 17 points, grabbed six rebounds, passed off for three assists and blocked tw

What Jeff Teague can bring to the Celtics offense

Bringing in Jeff Teague as some guard depth this year could end up being a monumental move for this year's Celtics team. Teague is a well respected veteran in the league, and having gone to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2015 with the Atlanta Hawks, knows what it takes to win tough games. Here's a brief look at why I think Jeff will be a great fit with the C's Every Celtics fan loves Marcus Smart , due to everything he brings to the table, from the defensive intensity to scoring outbursts. For all the good things he does, Marcus excels off ball, and can have his effectiveness diminished when he is forced to be a primary ball handler. He is often pigeon-holed into that role with the second unit (or when Kemba is out), and Teague's addition will hopefully allow him to play more off-ball and maximize his abilities.  At the deadline last year, Teague was traded to the Atlanta Hawks to play alongside Trae Young. His usage rate and effectiveness dipped considerably, as he