New York, NY - According to Ian Begley of ESPN, New York Knicks shooting guard J.R. Smith is unsure if he still has a future with the team. The Knicks defeated the Miami Heat 102-92 this evening, but head coach Mike Woodson benched Smith and made no comments about Smith’s future with the team. Smith has had a history off off-the-court issues, and his antics have made their way onto the floor this year.
Smith has played in 29 games this season with the Knicks, averaging 11.3 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 3.0 assists per game. Those numbers make it obvious just how important he can be to the team when he’s able to stay out of trouble, but that hasn’t been the case throughout his entire career. J.R. Smith won the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award last season and was expected to put together yet another stellar season this year.
There have already been reports that the New York Knicks are shopping Smith hard, but it doesn’t sound like there will be any interest in him at this time. That may change as the trading deadline draws closer if a team decides that they need a scorer in their rotation. Even if the Knicks do get some offers for Smith, it likely won’t be the type of return that they would like. Smith’s contract is not very friendly to most teams, especially because of his issues off the floor.
“Honestly, I don’t even know at this point. At one point I was for sure.” – J.R. Smith on future with Knicks
This will be a situation to keep an eye on over the next few weeks. There is no denying that J.R. Smith is a great player when his head is in the game, but there aren’t many franchises that will want to deal with his constant immaturity. If he wants his NBA career to continue flourishing like it seemed to last season, he needs to get himself back to being a professional.
Evan Massey is the Lead Editor for Hoops-Nation. Follow Evan on Twitter at @Massey_Evan.