J.R.Smith upset about losing starting role to Dwyane Wade
How will J.R.Smith handle coming off the bench?
What the story?
During an episode of the podcast, Road Trippin J.R. Smith said he was "hurt" by the decision to start Dwyane Wade instead of himself. J.R. Smith was traded from the New York Knicks to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2014-15 season and eventually beat out Iman Shumpert to become the team's starting shooting guard.
In Case you didn't know
Last week of September, Dwyane Wade and the Chicago Bulls agreed to buyout out of his 23 million dollar contract as the 35-year-old walked away with 15 million of the 23. Now, a free agent Dwayne Wade had to decide who he would play for in the 2017-18 season. He was pursued by the OKC, San Antonio, Miami, and of course Cleveland. Wade would sign a one year 2.3 million dollar contract to reunite with LeBron James. Wade and LeBron went to four straight NBA Finals with Chris Bosh and won two of them as members of the Miami Heat.
After losing by a record margin to the San Antonio Spurs in 2014, Lebron decided to return to his hometown and sign with the Cleveland Cavaliers. When the Cavs began recruiting Wade J.R. Smith was told that Dwyane Wade would come off the bench and he would remain the starting shoot guard but head coach Tyronn Lue decided to put Wade in the starting lineup instead. After hearing the news this is what J.R. Smith had to say about it on the podcast:
" Honestly I was hurt,man," said Smith. " I was really emotionally drained at the point. I got wind of it that it was going to go down, but I didn't know .I was told he's going to be great for the second unit....It would be great fit for the team, whatever,whatever. I'm like awesome, let's do it. One hundred percent. Out of all people, another person we're going to just grab for damn-near nothing? For sure . Let's do it
I believe Smith felt a bit betrayed by the move and it will take him some time to adjust but this is not a role that J.R. Smith has to not played before.
"My first initial thought, it wasn't even to be selfish because that's not just who I am as a player and as a person," said J.R. Smith "I'm a one-track mind. It's what I've always been. That's just me. So when you tell me something, I look at it as gold. So when you tell me something else, literally a couple of days later, it's like, ah, now I got to change my mind frame from where I was at the last three years to flip it back to me being the sixth man -- a successful three years, an extremely successful three years, I mean, we've been to three straight Finals."
And despite Wade being a starter by name, he and Smith will most likely split the minutes with J.R. getting more minutes given Wade ongoing knee problems.
I feel that J.R. Smith may be hurt but he will soon realize that he will get more opportunity to score coming off the bench than in the starting lineup. Wade gets to feed off of LeBron offense and J.R.Smith will become the focal point for Cleveland off the bench. He will be able to run the second unit like he did in New York, which helps him make a case for Sixth Man of the Year.