The Boston Celtics are facing the Miami Heat in the NBA’s Eastern Conference Finals. Game one ended with a Miami Heat victory on their home court. Two Celtics’ starters didn’t play in the game in Marcus Smart and Al Horford.
These two players have been crucial all season and playoffs long for the Celtics. The Celtics can still win without them but they would like to get them back sooner than later. However, there is no real timeline for getting these players back. Smart is dealing with a knee injury while Horford is in health and safety protocols.
Boston definitely misses both of these starters, but Smart’s impact by being out of the lineup may be a bigger blow to Boston right now. The Defensive Player of the Year would likely be matched up on Jimmy Butler who had 41 points in the Heat’s game one win.
Both of these players are key to Boston’s offense as well. Smart is averaging 15 points and six assists in the playoffs and Horford is averaging 13 points and 9 rebounds.
The Celtics will go back to Miami for game two. If Boston can at least get Smart and Horford back for game three at home, they could have a chance in this series.
Photo Credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Marcus_Smart_(34481569696).jpg