No one has ever questioned J.R. Smith the basketball player. Whether he is hooping in the United States or over in China, when it comes to pure unfiltered skill level, there is nothing to debate – Smith is a baller.
Any and all questions pertaining to whether or not a GM wants Smith on his team have always stemmed from his attitude and mindset.
Ever since his days with the New Orleans Hornets, the Saint Benedict’s Prep product has been recognized as a guy who does whatever he wants, whenever he wants. If he wants to put up dumb shots – he’ll do it. If he doesn’t want to play defense – he won’t. Some league executives are okay with that sort of player if he is as supremely talented as Smith clearly is; some league executives wouldn’t touch Smith with a 10-foot pole.
Last night in garbage time against the San Antonio Spurs, Smith displayed the sort of ridiculous offensive savvy and athleticism that makes him such a huge fan favorite (when he isn’t screwing anything up) on one particular play:
Turning a pretty regular Pablo Prigioni pass into a highlight? That’s J.R. Smith – through and through.