Monday, February 6, 2012

J.R. Smith Ballin Out in China

J.R. Smith (possibly the most tatted player in The League) will be returning to the NBA to finish out the season once his Chinese team, the Zhejiang Golden Bulls, wraps up their season (probably by late February, not too sure though). After signing a contract to play in China during the lockout (with no opt-out clause), the NJ native found himself stuck overseas with no way out. In late November (during the team's first game), it was alleged that JR suffered a serious knee injury, but it was later reported that Smith was denying the team's medical treatment and ultimately faking the injury (my understanding is he sought medical treatment from his personal doctor in Beijing, instead of the team medical staff). Despite the rumors, Smith insisted he was not trying to dip out on his Chinese teammates (when Smith went to Beijing, the team management thought he was trying to dip) and that he was in fact ready to play after his MRI came back negative. Since then though, J.R. has been feelin it.

Smith broke 3 dudes ankles in one game (including stephon marburys) a few weeks back, and has been making it rain from beyond the arc, while his sister (and girlfriend) pick fights with Chinese fans on a nightly basis. I mean its obviously pretty gangster playin out in China when you got girls starting fights in the stands while JR, Wilson Chandler, and Starbury drop 45 a night (I wish they televised this shit). Anyhow, Smith is still playing for Zhejiang, and despite interest from various teams (OKC, both LA's, Knicks, & Chi-town), it is unknown exactly when he will be allowed to return (even once his team's season is over, he has to be approved by FIBA for reinstatement to the NBA). OKC is a tight-knit group and I'm not so sure they would bring in JR. The Clippers are extremely interested in Smith, but can't afford to offer him that much money. The Bulls were said to have been interested in JR before the lockout, so don't count them out. The Knicks is evidently where I think J.R. will end up. They can offer him $2.5 mil mini-mid-level exception deal (similar to what the Clipps offered to Kenyon Martin) and he could fit into their starting 5 right away (or come off the bench and be a dope 6th man). I haven't heard much detail about the Lakers interest, but reported that Smith was considering those five teams. So for now enjoy the video (not the best quality) and be sure to check back for updates regarding JR's playing status in the States.

A few nights ago, JR put up 60 (while coming off the bench) in a playoff game, while going 14 for 18 from 3 (dude went straight ham).

***UPDATE*** JR Smith and his Chinese team have been eliminated from the playoffs, which means he will be ready to play in the NBA around February 18th (that's what I have been hearing). With the loss of Chanucey Billups, look for the Clippers to step up and snag Smith. I know I said the Knicks about a week ago, but with that injury, I don't see how the Clippers can afford to let JR go to NY. Stay tuned for future updates on JR.

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