“Not Going to Back Down From Anybody”- Marcus Smart Shares Insights on What Kyrie Irving Is Like as a Teammate

Marcus Smart on Kyrie Irving as a teammate
Marcus Smart and Kyrie Irving (Image Source: Getty Images)

Kyrie Irving made a top tier spot for himself in the league through his remarkable performances. However, his controversial actions against his former teams have overshadowed that. Nevertheless, this hasn’t change the fact that he’s one of the best teammates, not only to Luka Doncic on the Mavericks, but also his former Celtics teammate Marcus Smart.

When Smart was asked to share on the “Run Your Race” podcast how he viewed Kyrie as a teammate, the Texan instantly replied, “Great teammate.”

“And I think Kyrie gets a little bit more than his fair share [of criticism] because of just who he is,” Smart added. “He’s not going to back down from anybody — on the court or off the court. No matter what topic you want to talk to him about, don’t matter what game, what sport, he’s not going to back down. And that gives him a lot more shade than normal, but as a teammate, Kyrie’s great.”

The duo have shared the stage for roughly two seasons from 2017 to 2019. During that period, the duo had some ups and downs in their bond which Smart revealed to the same host Theo Pinson.

Smart Looks Back at Coming to Terms With Kyrie Irving

While sharing his insights on Kyrie Irving, Marcus Smart spoke about their bumpy initial days in the squad. Both the guards found it hard in the beginning to establish a connection with each other on the hardwood.

Explaining how he and Kyrie came to terms, Smart said, “I remember, I sat him down one time and was like, ‘Listen bruh, I just want to see how you’re doing. I know you’ve got a lot going on too. People probably don’t ask you as much as how you’re doing.’ I just told him, I said, for me to be the best defender that I’m going to be, bruh, I’m going to guard you and it’s going to be every day.” (After 59 seconds)

Soon after, Kyrie left for the Nets and a few years later, Smart was unexpectedly traded to the Grizzlies. However, the latter still has a high regard for his former teammate.

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