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Marcus Smart available for Celtics in critical Game 4

Minnesota Timberwolves v Boston Celtics

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - JANUARY 02: Marcus Smart #36 of the Boston Celtics celebrates during the first quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves at TD Garden on January 02, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

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Just in time.

Heading into a game where the Celtics’ season essentially hangs in the balance — not to mention the off-season implications that would come with Boston being bounced in the second round — Marcus Smart will be back in the Celtics’ rotation.

Smart had been out since the final game of the regular season with a left oblique tear.

In a series where defense has been king and offenses have struggled — the Bucks are 5.5 and the Celtics 5.4 points per 100 possessions worse than their regular season numbers — the Celtics now bring back the best defensive guard in the NBA this past season. He also shot 36.4 percent from three this season.

More than that, Smart brings tenacity, grit, and energy to the Celtics when he is on the court.

Boston needs that at home in Game 4 because lose this game to the Bucks and things will get desperate in Bean Town.