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At least one general manager believes Marcus Smart’s draft stock will drop due to shove

Feb 11, 2014, 9:30 AM EDT

I wonder whether Marcus Smart regrets his decision to return to Oklahoma State for his sophomore year.

Smart, who could have been picked as high as No. 2 by the Magic in last year’s draft, has been projected to be drafted around No. 6 this year. Even though he has shown some improvement, scouts are using the extra assessment time to pick apart his game.

And now, after Smart pushed a Texas Tech fan, NBA teams are picking apart his personality.

Via Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports:

“His stock is going to take a hit,” one NBA general manager told Yahoo Sports. “He has shown in the past few months that he is prone to outbursts. He kicked a chair (against West Virginia). He’s under a lot of pressure. The team is not doing well, struggling.

“Fans say things in the NBA every day. He has a history of letting people get under his skin. The NBA fans will test him.”

Spears also quotes, anonymously, other executives who don’t believe this incident will hurt Smart’s draft stock.

Like most analyses of any aspect of any draft prospect, there wasn’t going to be a unanimous opinion. Heck, I bet there is a front-office person who views Smart’s shove as a positive, because it shows his passion.

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Avoiding the complicated question of what rights Smart had when it came reacting to the fan, I do believe Smart should see his draft stock slip drop. NBA teams need players who can maintain their composure in strenuous situations, and the shove at least indicates Smart needs work in that area.

However, I don’t view this incident as an indictment of Smart’s emotional stability. Ditto him kicking a chair and ditto both events presented together.

The shove made huge news, because there’s purported to be an invisible wall between fans and players – not because Smart got more frustrated than other players get from time to time. Any general manager that docks Smart should also dock players who commit frustration fouls, stew on the bench or vent in the locker room. Those types of incidents are, deservedly, lower profile, but they speak just as strongly to a players’ temper – the relevant issue here.

So, yes, I’d lower my grade on Smart as a prospect, but only by a very small amount.

  1. jjpt4540 - Feb 11, 2014 at 10:01 AM

    That GM hope he drops so they can draft him.

    • qadrir - Feb 12, 2014 at 3:36 PM

      He will be a very good fit for SAC Town KINGS playing next to Cousins. They both can have a pow wow every night. Will be fun to watch. I am telling Shaq and Delsandoro the Kings GM are already gloating over Smart in Kings uni. A pro typical Kings choice.

  2. asimonetti88 - Feb 11, 2014 at 10:09 AM

    Petros and Money were talking about the chance that this could push Smart down the board to the Lakers. That would be great, he is a very talented, big guard.

    • aboogy123456 - Feb 11, 2014 at 10:47 AM

      I would love him on the lakers but at this point I’m starting to aim even higher and hoping the lakers get a top 3 pick. Smart would be awesome but I would prefer Exum for example, because he has much more potential on defense, which the lakers need at point. Watch the scouting video on Smart, it’s very interesting. He has a lot of potential but the issue is his lateral quickness and overall athleticism, and those are hard things to improve.

      • asimonetti88 - Feb 11, 2014 at 10:56 AM

        As of right now they are in the mid-lottery. If they continue to lose (remember Kobe’s coming back in the next month) then yeah, they might get someone better, but if you’re in the mid-lottery, you could do a lot worse than Smart.

    • censoredpost - Feb 11, 2014 at 2:12 PM

      Lakers are getting a top 3 pick, on a Silver Platter. Go Lakers!

  3. psubeerman21 - Feb 11, 2014 at 11:20 AM

    His stock won’t drop. He’s a talented 19 year old that needs seasoning and maturity. If he wants to be a NBA player and wants to work hard, there won’t be an issue. They will come in time.

    • florida727 - Feb 11, 2014 at 3:20 PM

      Totally agree. I’d like to know if the GM quoted ever did anything he regretted when he was 19. The old Al McGuire saying, “best thing about freshmen is they become sophomores”. In this case, the best thing about Marcus Smart is that he’s going from 19 to 20 soon enough (I know, he’s not a freshman). Cut the kid a break. He doesn’t deserve the scrutiny he’s getting. The idiot fan, Jeff Orr, deserves that. Jock-sniffing wannabe.

  4. sportfan2 - Feb 11, 2014 at 6:57 PM

    Although I did like his apology and the fans for that matter. Smart is not ready for the pros, as a player or person.

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