The hustle don’t stop when you headed to the top!
Marcus Smart, the 2021-2022 NBA Defensive Player of the Year is still showing the world that defense will always matter. On Monday, Smart added to his trophy case after winning the 2021-2022 NBA Hustle award, an award that consists of tracking deflections, loose balls recovered, contested shots, box-outs, and screen assists.
With this accolade, Smart becomes the first player to win the award multiple times since its debut in 2016-17 (per the NBA). Helping Boston lead the NBA in defensive rating (106.2), three-point percentage allowed (33.9), and field percentage allowed (43.4). Smart showed he was a force to be reckoned with after finishing the season recovering 75 loose balls (good for fourth in the League) and tied for 10th place with 16 charges drawn in the regular season.
Smart tied for the 10th in the League with 206 deflections all season. He also showed a willingness to do the dirty work, leading all guards with 104 boxouts and finishing with a career-high 3.2 defensive rebounds per game this season. Smart leads the League in playoff drawn charges with eight.
Aside from defensive matters, Marcus Smart finished the regular season averaging 12.1 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and a career-high 5.9 assists. It’s clear that Smart’s effort isn’t in his stats, but in what he shows on the floor each and every day with his clutch hustle plays and intense energy. With this achievement, Smart gives hope to all players who aren’t the best offensively skilled, showing them that when playing defense, you will get rewarded, maybe not now, but eventually, you will.
The Boston Celtics will look to even the series at 2-2 during Monday’s Game 4 against the Miami Heat .