No stranger to adversity, especially in the form of cancer, Smart now has to bear the weight of his mother, Camelia Smart, having been diagnosed with bone marrow cancer.
Marcus lost an older brother - Todd - to the disease when just nine years old, and despite the fact Smart doesn't believe his mother can be treated with a bone marrow transplant, he remains hopeful.
Maybe more than ever, he's itching to get back on the court so his mother can see him play again this season (per ESPN's Chris Forsberg):
"She's a fighter ... we're trying to see what can work right now ... She told me she'd rather I was here than back there, doing what I love to do, because she loves to watch me play, because that would put a smile on her face, if I got back healthy and back on the court ... I love playing basketball ... a lot of my friends and family were telling me that basketball is my eye of the storm, where I'm the most calm, where I can think and release all that pressure. But it is hard to leave her, knowing the situation. But my family members are all there, and she has everyone around her"
It's understandable that he'd be pulled in both directions, and this scenario is much too reminiscent of the fate of both Isaiah Thomas and Jae Crowder, both losing family going into the postseason. Here at CelticsLife, our thoughts are with Marcus. We wish him luck no matter how he chooses to cope with this, and look forward to seeing him back in uniform as soon as he is ready. Until then, a message for Smart - and any of us dealing with this disease in our midst: