Brad Stevens aware of Marcus Smart hype, no updated timeline for return


MILWAUKEE — Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens is aware of the ever-growing hype about Marcus Smart’s increased activity as he works his way back from a torn oblique but Stevens said he still hasn’t inquired with the medical staff about a possible timeline for a return to game action.

"He’s not doing any of our [full] group work, said Stevens, who has seemingly fielded a question about Smart at least once per day since the injury. “We’ll do some small-group [work] with some of the guys that didn’t play [in Game 1]. I’m sure he’ll shoot, get stretched, and do all of the time testing that he does when you guys come out there in Boston so that he creates more discussion and talk and good videos and Twitter and all of that stuff. 

"But he’s not doing anything with us in preparation for [playing] any time soon.”

Stevens has suggested that Smart remains on the initial 4-6 week timeline the team offered in the aftermath of his diagnosis, while stressing that he still believes four weeks is aggressive. Sunday marked three weeks from the injury. 

Stevens was pressed on when the coach might have a better grasp of the timeline.

"Until he gets into something with practice, I don’t think we have a chance to have a timeline,” said Stevens. “So if he comes in and can practice between one of those three-day breaks [in the playoff schedule], then I think we can start to talk about, ‘OK, he’s two weeks away, one week away, three weeks away.' Whatever the case may be. 

"He hasn’t even been cleared for any of that stuff yet. And, to be real candid, I just haven’t asked.”

Smart has steadily ramped up his individual workouts recently, doing more running activities and stretching out his shooting distances. But team brass has stressed that, until follow-up scans show the tear has sufficiently healed, no amount of Smart activity will accelerate when he can return to full basketball activities.

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