J.R. Smith has been all over the news the last week. Making bold statements is what Smith loves to do. He keeps the fans on their toes as you never know what he’s going to say/do next.
One hot topic on people’s minds is Smith explaining in a recent interview that he “wants to be more of a leader.” Everyone is jumping on him claiming that he must be sarcastic, or that he is the farthest thing from a leader.
The Knicks need people to step up. With a franchise enduring a time of transition, its always good to have leaders or those who can set an example for the younger guys. The Knicks were the best they have been in a long time back in 2012-2013 when they had a lot of veteran players to keep everyone in line.
The Knicks are a much younger team now and need a veteran presence. Although Smith has made some very stupid decisions in the past, anyone can become a leader. Look at Rasheed Wallace; that guy was a psycho yet is viewed as good leader. Jason Kidd has made some major mistakes in his life, as recent as his DUI on the Knicks, but he is an NBA head coach.
Smith can become a leader. He works hard, he is an excellent player, and if he buys into what Phil Jackson and Derek Fisher bring to the table this year, he could be one of the best shooting guards in the NBA. Sometimes you just need a fresh start with new coaches; he’s just turning 29 and will be healthy for once. The talent is there, he just needs to keep his head on straight. Maybe him striving to be a leader will allow him to finally do this.
As for his recent comments on being one of the greatest shooters of all time, that’s just J.R. being J.R. Of course he thinks very highly of himself. He would not be the player he is today without that confidence that the next one’s going in.
Is he one of the best shooters of all time? No. His career averages aren’t bad (42.5% FGM, 37.1%3PM), but they aren’t “greatest ever” good. But when he gets hot, there is no stopping him. What he should have said was that he is one of the streakiest shooters of all time. Sometimes he can’t miss, sometimes he can’t even hit the rim. It’s J.R. Smith though; you live and die by the hot streaks.
All the news on Smith is just signaling that it’s almost Knick season again! At least we know J.R. is working on his game and is itching for the season to start. Sometimes he just likes to motivate himself through the media. Smith is talking the talk; now we just need him to walk the walk.