The Boston Celtics are looking to live for another day and take the series back to the TD Garden with a win on Tuesday night.
However, they haven’t been able to crack the Miami Heat, with Erik Spoelstra’s adjustments driving Joe Mazzulla crazy.
Still, and even though Mazzulla’s coaching, decision-making, and timeout management have left a lot to be desired, Marcus Smart believes he’s not to blame for their shortcomings.
Per the former Defensive Player of the Year, it’s up to the players to show up and do their jobs, citing that there’s only so much a coach can do.
Marcus Smart: "It's on us. There's only so much that any coach can do for you out there as a player" pic.twitter.com/cYZgZWX5FD
— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) May 23, 2023
Smart has a valid point right there, as the players’ body language has been way off, and it sometimes feels like they’ve just given up on the court.
Nonetheless, keeping the team locked in and motivated is also a part of a coach’s job.
Mazzulla has looked clueless at times, and it’s hard to keep your players’ drive when everybody can tell you’re getting nervous.
The Celtics don’t have any top-notch assistants on Mazzulla’s staff, and he might not have the experience to deal with this kind of thing.
That doesn’t mean he’s a bad coach at all, but he could be over his head against a savvy veteran and elite tactician like Spoelstra.
No team has ever come back from a 0-3 deficit in NBA playoff history, but the Celtics need to take this series one game at a time and show some pride before heading back home with a sweep.NEXT: Celtics Star Shares A Concerning Take On Team's Identity