Marcus Smart Was In ‘Complete Shock’ Over His Trade To The Grizzlies

The Boston Celtics’ pursuit of Kristaps Porzingis from the Washington Wizards in a three-team trade involving the Los Angeles Clippers fell apart on Wednesday, but they managed to rally and pull off a deal before midnight that involved the Memphis Grizzlies, instead. The catch: Instead of moving Malcolm Brogdon, who was slated to go to the Clippers in the original deal, Boston sent the heart and soul of their team to Memphis, as Marcus Smart is going to play for a new team for the first time in his NBA career.

It was legitimately stunning, as Smart has been a staple in Boston since he entered the league. And according to multiple reports, he was just as shocked by the move, too. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Smart “did not see that trade coming until the team notified him, like, maybe 15, 10 minutes before.”

Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe added some more details, and reported that a source close to Smart viewed this as a “gut punch” because “He thought he was going to retire there. He wanted to retire there.”

Smart joined a brief call with his closest confidants late Wednesday night, sources said, and expressed hurt that out of all the guards on the roster, the Celtics decided to part ways with him. He had come so far with the franchise and was determined to hang its first championship banner since 2008. He believed they were so close.

While getting Porzingis and a pair of first-round picks should both help the Celtics, there are few (if any) players more beloved in Boston sports than Smart. It’s hard to imagine him playing for another team, in large part because he never thought that would happen.