JR Smith Wants Iman Shumpert to Keep Playing Angry

by December 08, 2013

Iman Shumpert has been honest about his anger recently, anger that he says is pointed “at everything”—presumably the fact that the Knicks have been awful, but also at the media for the way it’s portrayed the team and speculated about potential trades. Shump’s teammate JR Smith doesn’t mind the anger, and says it’s when actually Shump plays his best. Via the NY Post: “Stay angry. That’s J.R. Smith’s message to Iman Shumpert, who admitted Friday he is ‘[mad] at the world,’ then took it out on the Garden rim with a violent right-handed driving dunk against the Magic that had the arena rocking and the iron shaking. ‘That’s when Shumpert plays his best, when he plays angry and [has] a chip on his shoulder,’ Smith said. ‘That’s when he succeeds the most. He should keep playing like that. He should always play like that. He’s the guy with the most energy on the team. For him to be a defensive guy and make offensive plays like he did the last couple of games, that’s a hell of a combination.’ Shumpert scored a season-high 17 points against the Nets, draining five of seven 3-pointers. Against Orlando, he scored 10 points on 4-of-9 shooting with four defensive rebounds and created several fast break opportunities. He looks nothing like the lost soul that appeared to have quit on coach Mike Woodson in Portland two weeks ago. Indications are President Steve Mills hasn’t found a good trade for Shumpert, since the Knicks would want a significant frontcourt asset in return. The Knicks have a shooting-guard glut Woodson is slowly figuring out, spreading minutes between Shumpert, impressive rookie Tim Hardaway Jr. and Smith.”