It was pretty clear that JR Smith loved playing and living in New York. Maybe he loved it too much which at times may have affected his play, or so he thinks.
Smith was traded to the Cavaliers from the Knicks earlier this month and he thinks that’s the best thing that could have happened.
“I think this is the best situation for me, cause there’s nothing but basketball,” Smith said. “There’s nothing you expect but basketball. There’s nothing, there’s no going out, there’s no late nights. There’s video games, basketball and basketball. So it’s a great thing, cause I go back to where I came from. When I grew up, I never, I wasn’t allowed to go out. I missed my prom because I went to an AAU tournament, and all that stuff. For me, it was basketball, basketball, basketball.
Smith had trouble adjusting to learn the triangle offense under first year coach Derek Fisher. He went from a team that is pretty much in “tank mode,” the Knicks, to a playoff contender in Cleveland. Even though Smith is now in a better situation, he wishes things could have worked out in New York.
“I wanted to be one of the players that understood it, that got it,” Smith said. “The two greatest players in the world at my position played in it, and thrived in it, got all the accolades and championships and whatever else came with it. I wanted to be a part of that significant group. Not that I think I’m like those two guys in any way, but to be a part of the building process that that’s the base of, and go from there.”
I always thought if Phil Jackson taught every cocktail waitress in Manhattan the triangle, JR would have mastered it in two days.