Even with his team all but assured of missing the playoffs and up by more than 40 points, he refused to take his starters out of the game. His players refused to relent, too.
That was a bad combination for the Raptors.
Monta Ellis had 27 points and 10 assists, Dorell Wright finished with 26 points and the Warriors scored an NBA season-high 84 points in the first half in a 138-100 rout of the Raptors on Friday night.
"I wanted to send a message to our team that we are building," Smart said. "This is a process. The way we have always done it at this time of year, to sit back and not play, you've got your better players on your team who want to play and will play, and that's a good thing."
They might not have played this well all season.
Stephen Curry added 23 points and eight assists to help the Warriors snap a six-game losing streak in blowout fashion. The first-half point total topped the previous high of 80 set by Denver in a 127-99 victory over Cleveland earlier this season.
The game was such a blowout that no Warriors player could recall ever being ahead by so much in an NBA game.
"Probably in high school," Wright said. "It's been a long time."
DeMar DeRozan and Leandro Barbosa scored 19 points apiece, and Ed Davis had 18 points in a demoralizing defeat for a Toronto team also assured of missing the playoffs. They trailed by 26 points at the half, 47 in the fourth quarter and were never competitive.
Jose Calderon also left with a strained left hamstring, and that still might not have been the worst part. Things got so bad that Raptors coach Jay Triano said he asked Julian Wright to enter the game and Wright refused.
"We were six deep already at the wing spot. I asked him to go in, he didn't go in," Triano said. "That's fine. I just went back with Leandro."
Toronto's offseason couldn't come soon enough.
The Warriors turned things into a personal highlight show: Curry threw a full-court pass that led to a dunk by Wright; Ellis sliced his way through the paint for several sizzling layups; and Curry, Ellis and Wright combined to go 7 for 9 from beyond the arc in the opening half alone.
The result was a complete dismantling of the Raptors in every offensive phase. Golden State shot 68 percent in the half, 77 percent from long range, outrebounded Toronto 20-12 and had 20 assists.
"It's probably one of the toughest games mentally I've had to go through in my career," Davis said. "It's tough. You never want to go through that again.
Not that the Warriors were done after the break.
They continued the offensive onslaught in the third quarter, giving fans at least a little incentive to stay for a team all but assured of missing the postseason again. David Lee, who had 21 points and seven rebounds, also made a rare 3-pointer. A series of alley-oops and uncontested dunks ensued, and the Warriors went up 47 in the fourth and never relented.
Ellis finished with 41 minutes played and Curry 36 minutes, and only six other Warriors logged more than eight minutes.
"All those guys want to play, and they're excited about playing," Smart said. "Because our time is going to come."
Golden State's franchise record for points in a first half is 88 against Sacramento on Nov. 2, 1991. ... The most points scored in any half this season is 85 by Indiana on Nov. 9. ... Warriors C Andris Biedrins was out with a severely sprained left ankle. He is expected to miss at least one more game. ... Raptors PF Joey Dorsey was sidelined with flulike symptoms. ... The Warriors are donating $5 for every remaining ticket sold for the next two home games to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF that will aid victims of the earthquakes and tsunami in Japan.