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BOSTON — Barring an unexpected setback, all indications are that Marcus Smart will make his postseason debut tonight against Milwaukee.
Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Smart did some 1-on-1 and 2-on-2 work following Boston’s morning shoot-around and came out of it “feeling great.”
Smart has been out with a surgically repaired right thumb injury since March.
“He hasn’t played in six weeks, so it’s hard to say how much (time he will get) but will certainly play,” Stevens said.
Stevens said there would not be a minutes restriction on him, but added that the fourth-year guard wasn’t going to play 35 minutes.
Smart averaged 29.9 minutes in 54 games played this season, along with 10.2 points, 4.8 assists and 3.5 rebounds.
Even before Stevens acknowledged Smart would play tonight, the Bucks began planning for him to play as soon as Smart's status went from being “out” to “questionable” on Monday.
“We know how he plays, we know how he plays within their system,” said Milwaukee interim head coach Joe Prunty. “He’ll definitely add an element for them. If he does play, we’re prepared for that.”
In an interview with NBC Sports Boston, Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton made it clear that the Bucks weren’t going to treat Smart any different, knowing he hasn’t played in nearly six weeks.
“He’s still been working,” Middleton told NBC Sports Boston. “You can’t disrespect him just because he hasn’t played in a while. You have to play him like he’s been playing all year long or this whole series, which is, get after him some too.”
Bucks center Thon Maker added, “He does a good job for them at both ends of the floor, by defending and on offense, moving the ball, facilitate a lot on the offensive end for them. With us, we have to find a way to match his energy if he does play tonight.”