Marcus Smart still isn’t close to returning to the court. But, he’s making progress, coach Brad Stevens told reporters Tuesday.
The 25-year-old guard suffered an oblique injury late in the regular season and is expected to be out for four to six weeks. Smart, however, began running on a treadmill Tuesday and also participated in lighting shooting drills, according to NBC Sports Boston.
Stevens said at practice Tuesday he didn’t “have an update” about Smart’s status.
“I know he’s not close to playing,” Stevens said. “I know he’s progressed well, but I don’t know what that means. … (The medical staff) said he’s making good progress. But it didn’t sound like the timeline was changing all that much from when I last talked to the training staff about it. I really haven’t talked about it in the last, probably, week or so.”
Smart said last weekend his rehab process had been difficult.
“It’s tough, tough from that standpoint because our whole lives we’ve been taught to fight through pain, to fight through injuries, to fight through anything, adversity, obstacles,” Smart said, via MassLive.com. “You get on that court you’re taught to go, go, go. You know the old saying, you’re going to feel better than you really are soon.
“Sometimes your mind actually forgets that you’re hurting, and you try to do things. You have to remind yourself, slow it down, take it easy, and that’s the hard part because you want to go, go, go but you can’t.”
Smart finished the regular season averaging 8.9 points, 2.9 rebounds and four assists. He shot 42.2 percent from the field and 36.4 percent from 3-point range.
The Celtics swept the Pacers in their first-round series. They’ll face the top-seeded Bucks in Round 2.