Friday, February 17th, 2012 at 9:10 am  |  82 responses

JR Smith to Join the New York Knicks

UPDATE: JR Smith confirmed the signing on Twitter this morning: ”New York Knicks It Is!”

The immortal JR Smith, as expected, will soon be wearing a New York Knicks uniform. According to the NY Post, Smith will be at MSG for tonight’s game as a spectator: “The Knicks will officially add free agent reserve shooting guard J.R. Smith to Linsanity today, making the hottest team in the NBA a deep team as well. According to multiple sources, Smith, who played in China during the lockout and became eligible to sign an NBA deal on Wednesday, will be at the Garden tonight, but won’t make his debut until Sunday against the Mavericks. The Knicks have to cut a player to make room for Smith and Renaldo Balkman, who has been out of the rotation since early January, is the expected candidate, according to a source. Coach Mike D’Antoni was never a big fan of Balkman, a throw-in to the trade with the Nuggets for Carmelo Anthony. Balkman has one remaining year at $1.8 million and could have been an amnesty casualty if the Knicks were still going for 2012 cap space.”

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  • http://slamonline.com. datkid

    smith is an idiot

  • BrooklynsFinest

    The Knicks are going to need to play with three balls. There definitely won’t be enough shots to go around. This will be interesting!

  • Dre

    Yeah, until he comes in the game and starts raining those 3s

  • floe

    no this is the perfect situation for him. dude doesn’t wanna learn how to play team ball, he never did.

  • http://www.nyill.wordpress.com O

    Dolan is an idiot…

  • ripslam

    All of the above statements are true.

  • @boweezy24

    I Think The Knicks Are Going to Keep Playing Good and Maybe Better. Lets Hope They Keep Winning.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    So Lin, Melo, Stat, AND JR need shots now? Are they allowing NY to play thier games with 4 balls?

  • Fred

    @ Wayno… Lin doesn’t need to shot with that kind of roster. He will average easily 10 assist. The reason why he shots that much in recent game, it’s because their was no Melo and no Stat.

  • Sizzle

    Haha the first comment says it all “Smith is an idiot”

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    JR would be a great fit with a strongly structured squad where he’d get yanked the minute he start’s f*cking around with missed 3 after missed 3. His numbers are going to look great in D-Antoni’s system and to be real….we’ll probably help to steal a couple of games the Knicks don’t have any business winning in the regular season when he has a hot shooting game…and maybe even help snatch a game in the playoffs, but he’s not enough to make up for the fact that the Knicks are still a 3 or 4 on a 1-10 scale of defense played.

  • Justin G.

    And the ball stops here

  • crooklyn

    Depth is a good thing, especially in this strike shortened season. How can adding another veteran who can score be a bad thing? Would you rather keep balkman? Grow up and let the team play and the coaches coach.

  • Jono

    For some reason I can see this working!

  • Jose

    @boweezy24: you mean, Lets Hope They Keep Linning! haha sorry, had to do that. . . But Fred is correct, i mena the PG on that team just has to walk it up to the top of the key, make one pass = assist. . easy now. . though i mean if ball sharing has worked during this recent stretch of wins, i don’t see this working well with Melo returning AND JR in the picture now

  • sprewell8

    even if they would win a chamionship, I will be disappointed. The would need player like Camby back on the bench

  • T-Money

    i’m puzzled by this move. was the extra million that important to jr that he didn’t want the clips’ starting 2-guard job? masai ujiri went to china 2 weeks ago to sell wilson chandler on a long term deal in denver. he didn’t even try to meet jr smith. knicks fans should keep that in mind. i’ve always loved jr’s talent but man. is he an idiot on the court. and chandler can’t protect lin, jr, melo and amare – that’s just too much to ask.

  • bull22

    this is not a very good move and shows how desperate the knicks are to contend rather then lin develop chemistry with carmelo and amare.
    smith is talent but also a hot-headed whiner,ball-hogger and carmelo’s

  • http://www.borntocompete.com Money$hot

    Hey JR Smith doesn’t play defense likes to run and gun and jack up shots quickly in an offense set. Sounds perfect for a Mike D’Antoni system.

  • Honduran

    I as a Knick fan am not happy about J.R. joining the Knicks… I’m more worried of Iman Shumps development…

  • G

    people need to stop hating first it was the knicks suck then we get lin and jr smith and its like we won the lottery we have a better deeper bench now thats how you win championships look at the mavs last year 9-10 man deep everybody just chill and let it play out

  • Moe

    He adds another dimension to the team at the 3 point line.
    What he does different to Novak is, when contested he can then drive to the hole and score or kick it and is a better defender.How many times have we seen Novak give up the ball when he doesn’t have the shot? Which is bad when the shot clock is low.
    Come on people did he not play very good team ball last year after Melo!

  • http://redoftoothandclaw.ca/ niQ

    Cosign datkid and O.

  • Selwyn ( UK )

    JR Smith + Carmelo + Amare , but there’s still only 1 ball right ? Not 1 each player ? Look forward to games of 118 – 109 . Look forward to zero team chemistry .


    I just know the Knicks can use J.R. Smith’s shooting…I think they have a strong enough locker room to make this work, which is why I believe the Knicks went ahead with this move. Always hate to see a guy get cut though…good luck to Balkman.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    F*ck!!! He better not be starting at least. Let Shump or Fields start and bring Smith off the bench. If he’s the new starting 2 guard Knicks can kiss the season goodbye. It’s time the Knicks start booing Dolan. Except there’s no one in the league with the last name Dolan, so they should boo the closest thing to it… Dooling. Boo Keyon Dooling the next time they play the Celtics.

  • crooklyn

    D’antoni got no problem taking heat for sitting players or playing players. Dude got signed for less than $3mil, d’antoni let steph sit for $21 mil. Hey, jr smith for a garbage time player – no brainer

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    good point, crooklyn.

  • Mike From Spain

    I think Smith should come off the bench because he plays the same game as Melo. Melo starts, then when he sits the team would go to JR for perimeter scoring punch, AKA chucking.

  • http://www.reverbnation.com/tray24 T-Ray

    I’d rather ball with the Clippers they just seem like I more complete team that would go deeper in the playoffs than the Knicks. But if they’re paying him more I see why he’s going there. He strikes me as a guy that doesn’t care about rings unless he bought them.

  • BuzzerBeater

    If Knicks can make Smith come off the bench, then they will be a legit championship contender. They now have scoring in the 2nd unit, just see how well Dallas used Jason Terry, or OKC with Harden. This would work!

  • http://theresastatforthat.blogspot.com deron

    The Knicks just added another one-dimensional player, they’ll score 110 ppg but they’ll give up 111. They thought that they could get far with two All-Stars, but both Amare and Carmelo are overrated one-dimensional players. These types of players do no lead a team to a championship – unless the coach instills a defensive mentality.


  • DHughes

    He ain’t that much of a ball hog sheesh ya’ll acting like he can’t play team ball it’s really just a sense of mind

  • dannyb

    D’Antoni is drawing up a new playbook called “2 seconds or less”

  • http://www.reverbnation.com/tray24 T-Ray

    Those teams actually play defense. But I get what you’re saying.

  • John

    How about you watch the kid play b4 bashing him, Yeah we know his history but when he made his choice to come play in NY he new there where 3 stars here already so I’m sure he knows his role.

  • David M.

    Melo should’ve stayed in Denver if he knew all of his homies would follow him…lol


    @Mike From Spain J.R. doesn’t play the same game as Melo. Saying that makes you look ignorant. However, I do agree, J.R. Smith should come off the bench, because he can provide some scoring punch right off the bench. J.R. is one of the best catch and shoot streak shooters I’ve ever seen. When J.R. Smith is really dangerous, is when he’s not always settling for the 3 point shot, and blowing by his defender for the higher percentage shot in the painted area. Guy can finish around the basket. When D’Antoni sits Melo and Tyson together, J.R. can play 2 or 3 alongside Ama’re. Really there are a lot of options for D’Antoni with J.R. in the rotation. J.R. is one of the best perimeter shooters in the league. Fanboys that wanted J.R. Smith to join their team (a la Bull fans, Clipper fans, CP3 ball washers, et al.) and didn’t get him are going to knock him now, which is expected.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    This upgrades New York’s offense. That’s for damn certain. Actually, unless he does mess up chemistry (which I doubt happens) he will definitely improve the team. Anything to not play Toney Douglas is a good decision (imo). — ANd T-Money, yes, you are supposed to believe that extra million was that important.

  • BuzzerBeater

    @T-Ray yep definitely they play better D than Knicks, although the D in 4th quarters recently is what’s been winning games, it has been a bit of a surprise lately, let’s see if this keeps up.

  • http://www.reverbnation.com/tray24 T-Ray

    I think they’re starting to buy into it because of Lin lol I can’t explain it but I think he’s just a breath of fresh air and whatever he does the team follows. But like you said we’ll see if it keeps up especially when Melo comes back. We all know he’s no Bruce Bowen.

  • Mike From Spain

    @Orange -> Well, I meant to say they both are ball stoppers and they are high volume shooters/scorers. Saying they play the same game is off the mark, I agree. Sloppy writing from me. To the best of my knowledge I’d say Melo needs the ball in his hands and pretty much scores in any way you can think of, I would guess (I haven’t seem him in a while) that JR does not post up that much and plays a bit more off the ball but shoots pretty much everything.

  • http://www.nba.com Red

    Knicks aren’t going anywhere this year.

  • Mike From Spain

    I wish he’d come to the Timberwolves, they had some money to spare, but I guess NYC is more enticing. What an offensive upgrade would JR have been to Wes Johnson and Ridnour… The wolves have a ‘Carmelo-lite’ project in Beasley, but so far he seems either he’s not as skilled as everyone believed or he’s a head case. So JR was more sorely needed in Minny :)

  • Mike From Spain

    @Red -> 2nd PO round at least if they carry the current clip, I reckon… what is your definition of ‘not going anywhere’? Last year they went on the first round , didn’t they? I’d say they are not contenders but also not as disastrous as some say

  • bull22

    @orange, please that locker is one of the least strongest in the league.
    look because you are cool and provided its not the bulls or heat you face in first round i will give a knicks a pass into second, great story ends there
    and see you guys next year.. LOL

  • MarkyB

    It will work. Trust me.

  • charliewinning

    The Knicks need to focus on further developing Fields and Shump. I hate this signing. If he comes off the bench it may not be so bad, but his raw talent alone isn’t enough for me to be excited about him. No d, ball hog, bad ‘tude etc.

  • http://caseyvaughn.com AlbertBarr

    All the people saying “How many balls are they going to be playing with?” Y’all said that about the grizzlies before last season and they figured it out didnt they? Didnt they!? (I mean, AI was one of the reasons that was being said but my point is that you do not give players enough credit for knowing how to play team ball, even if they have no history of it.) I mean, maybe JR got his fill of gunning in China and play a little more unselfishly now (long shot I know)

  • http://www.nba.com Red

    That’s what I meant @ Mike, my bad yeah they’re not contenders but perhaps will upset 1 team, Pacers probably.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    The Grizz before last season missed the playoffs. If that’s the bar Knicks fans are reaching for…go right ahead.

  • Kadavour

    Ball stopper. Doesn’t play D. he should fit in FINE with Amar’e and Melo. Oh boy NY, we’re in for a wild ride.

  • stlheatmaniac

    welcome to Jack City!! u got Melo Jackin up shots and now u got Smith Jackin up shots! lol! Jack City B*** Jack Jack City B***

  • http://slamonline.com. datkid

    I could see the knicks getting eaten alive by a more cohesive defensive team… like the sixers or the pacers.

  • http://www.nba.com Red

    Pacers have crashed & burned, which honestly I predicted.

  • http://nyill.wordpress.com/ O

    Didn’t the Knicks already beat the Sixers WITHOUT a point guard?

  • http://Slamonline.com Kap

    @Eboy…the Knicks are actually a top ten ranked defense. It was their offense that was awful prior to Linsanity

  • http://Slamonline.com Kap

    Smith is not a bad defender either

  • Paul H

    Anyone see that TNT interview with Blake? Two points: First, The more I have seen him interviewed over the past two years the more I am resigned to the fact that Blake Is exceptionally dull. Second, If I have to hear Shaq talk about being the original son of jorel, or hear one more reference to superman, I am getting on the next flight to the states to hit him with something really hard when the bast*rd aint looking.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    This sounds like when the 76ers paired Webber with Iverson.

  • http://Slamonline.com Kap

    He dissed Jalen Rose last nite as well

  • http://www.nba.com Red

    Knicks are not a top tier Defense, stop that mess.

  • g-ryder

    im a big Knicks fan, but im not sure how this will play out. Smith can bring a lot of offense off of the bench. But he can also be a knucklehead. In Dantonis system this might work. Especially now that Mike Woodson got them playing Defense

  • shutup

    Gotta say Orange predicted this one right on the money. Its funny when people so vehemently disagree when an idea is presented, but as soon as it comes to fruition the same people are either nowhere to be found or conveniently forget. I can see three people in this thread that fit the latter and 2-3 that suspiciously ghost.

  • slamfan4life

    noooo, iwanted him on the clipps!!!

    Gluck to Smith tho

  • http://idunkonthem.blogspot.com albie1kenobi

    JR will have to come off the bench. all the players who have contributed significantly to the current win streak are actually above average defenders (shumpert, jeffries, fields, chandler), so if JR is part of the starting line up, the knicks will get killed on defense when the starters are in, and they won’t get any buckets when the bench are in.
    win-win situation!

  • http://nyill.wordpress.com/ O

    I’m pretty sure Antoni will throw in JR when Tyson, Jared and Shump are on the floor. NO WAY he throws him in there with Melo, Stat and Lin. Teams would score 80% field goals in the paint. When is Jorts coming back? He played tough in the paint too.

  • Donatello

    My first reaction was noooooooooooo

  • MrAir239

    JR can’t play good defense, tries too many circus shots/highlights, and overall isn’t benefiting the knicks whatsoever. He would benefit in a place like Minnesota, Charlotte, or any other currently rebuilding team because he could get the “green light” to do his thing. I think his game will suffer from all the knicks’ threats on offense. Coach Mike will probably be hard on him because his game is street-like. Not to say that JR sucks, I think he’s really good when hot and can dunk superbly. But, I just don’t see how this works out.

  • http://leipzig-eagles.de/ Speedy

    ‘Seven seconds or less system’ will create enough shots for everybody.
    But if they want to content in the postseason D’Antoni really has to mold a team defense that works. Will be hard.

  • str8 from samoa

    jr smith is da man haha

  • ChipS

    JR is not a bad defender when he wants to be. Same with Melo, when they see other guys buying in they buy in. Happened in Denver in 09. Everybody talks about JR being a ball stopper, I don’t see that. He ran the pick and roll with Nene and Birdman, he can do it with Tyson and Amare. I’ve never seen a chucker shoot 38.2% from three for his career and become a teams all time leader in three point field goals. His antics come in blowouts when his team are trying to show up the opponent. He’s had 2 games of 11 three’s made, one with 10 made, and one with 9. He can light it up. And to anyone who don’t believe the Knicks defense is better, look it up: Top 10 last time I checked, I think even Top 5. Can they keep it up? I think they can with Chandler,Jeffries,Shump,Fields, and when healthy Harrellson.

  • ChipS

    Here’s what I posted on the other Smith article about Jalen Rose and Shaq: Man, I wonder do Jalen Rose and Shaq got real beef. On the TNT halftime or pregame show(can’t remember which one), TNT showed a tweet by Jalen asking if Shaq will be able to close his suit jacket. Shaq seemed upset and mad and got defensive saying he didn’t know who Jalen Rose was, and said “If you shout my name at least be somebody” and the only guys he listen to on ESPN are Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless. Later, Jalen tweeted, “Shaq has Superman emblems in his home like a clown plus TNT has sideshow silly segments to hide the fact that he can’t talk.” Ouch. Me personally I still prefer TNT over ESPN any day of the week. Will be interesting to see how this will play out. Jalen has since deleted the tweets.

  • http://www.nba.com Red

    Whenever I watch Shaq trying to fit in with Chuck & them, I cringe. The guy tries so hard but he doesn’t fit in there. He doesn’t know what he’s doing or saying.

  • ChipS

    Shaq is a classic case of someone who can dish it, but can’t take it. If its a fourth guy to be needed on the set its C-Webb or GP, Gary Payton.

  • http://www.nba.com Red

    C-Webb for sure.

  • retrobat

    I always feel like I’m watching an episode of “The Office” now whenever I watch TNT because every time Shaq opens his mouth, it’s awkward.

  • http://www.nba.com Red

    The office is actually funny, and awkward funny(except the episode where Michael did the Scott’s tots thing). TNT is depressing awkward once shaqs mouth opens.

  • @Deknowz

    So it boils down to Renaldo Balkman for J.R Smith, agree or not it’s not a hard choice for any team.

  • swiftyk

    Knicks are going to be nuts. Wow.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Who should start–Shump or Fields? Both play extremely well with Lin, especially Fields. I don’t want to see Shump ever bring the ball up the floor ever again, but as a 2 guard he can be dangerous, and his defense is awesome. Shump should definitely close games out. Either way, whoever ends up sharing the floor with Smith in the second unit will suffer.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    What was the worst thing about prison, Prison Mike?