Marcus Smart was having a rough time in Game 1 of the Celtics' series against the Wizards.
So much so that he decided to bench himself in the fourth quarter so the team could rally.
"I just decided to take myself out. Things were going wrong and I was making a couple mistakes," Smart said Monday, via ESPN.com. "Everyone else was playing good, so I decided to take myself out and let those guys keep going, and really calm myself down and get ready to go back into the game to finish the game."
Smart finished with six points, four assists, three rebounds and three blocks. At the beginning of the fourth quarter he committed two turnovers and two fouls and was eventually subbed out for Isaiah Thomas, who lost a tooth earlier in the game.
Less than a minute later he was put back in, but things didn't get much better. And with 7:08 remaining, Thomas fouled Bojan Bogdanovic while he made a 3-pointer and then headed for the bench, where he would remain. Terry Rozier subbed in in place of Thomas.
The Celtics did hold on to defeat the Wizards, 123-111.
"Some people probably think it was a little selfish of me. They'd think I was really mad at myself. But it really wasn't," Smart said. "I just felt like, at that moment, we were up and my plays with the two turnovers back-to-back and the two fouls, fouling a 3-point shooter — something we all know you're not supposed to do, especially then he gets the and-1 that gets them rhythm and they keep going — I just felt like at that time for me and my team I wasn't really doing anything to help.
"So those guys, everybody else was in there playing. It wouldn't be fair for them and to this team for me to keep going and not give guys who've been playing well and things like that to just keep going and allowing myself to keep making mistakes. So I think it's from a maturity standpoint. Other people might look at it differently."