Celtics’ Marcus Smart says he’s ‘not a dirty player’ after being suspended for hitting Matt Bonner in the groin

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Marcus Smart is known as an aggressive defender, but he was a little too dogged defensively in a recent game against the Spurs.

Smart caught Matt Bonner in the groin while trying to fight through a screen, and after a review from the referees, he received a flagrant two foul, which comes with it an automatic ejection.

A day later. Smart also received a one-game suspension.

But despite the way it looked, Smart wanted to make it clear that he’s not a dirty player, and that this may have simply been an isolated incident.

From Jay King of MassLive.com:

“I still look at it the way I looked at it,” he said Monday night before visiting the Brooklyn Nets. “I can definitely see where it comes off to where the NBA made the decision. I respect the decision they made. I’ve gotta live with it.

“Looking at the film, it does look a little intentional. But that’s not who I am. I’m not a dirty player, nor was I trying to (hit Bonner below the waistband). But looking at the film, I can definitely see where that comes into play. The NBA made the right decision with the one-game suspension and I’m just glad to be back out here tonight with these guys.”

Smart’s other flagrant two came earlier this month, when he elbowed Elfrid Payton in the head on a drive to the basket.

It’s too early to label Smart as a dirty player just yet. But he is beginning to build himself a bit of a reputation.