Mike Woodson to J.R. Smith: ‘Be more of a pro’

Sam Spiegelman

Tim Hardaway Jr. — not J.R. Smith — was the first guard off the bench last night in the Knicks’ 98-96 overtime victory against the Suns last night. Smith played 25 minutes, scoring 10 points on 5-of-11 shooting, also dishing out two assists and grabbing a pair of rebounds.

Though it seems as if Smith is finally inching out of Mike Woodson’s doghouse, the coast is not clear yet.

Woodson had one message for Smith, who was benched after shoelace-gate made headlines last week: be a pro.

“The bottom line is he’s got to be more of a pro and do the right things and just concentrate on playing basketball,” he said of Smith, the reigning NBA Sixth Man of the Year. “That’s the name of the game, nothing else. You got to concentrate on your craft and what you’ve been paid to do — that’s play basketball. … That’s all I want him to do.”

Smith is averaging about seven fewer points than he did during his award-winning campaign last year, not surprisingly after he received a three-year, $18 million contract over the offseason. But even more concerning than Smith’s clown antics regarding shoelaces is the fact the Knicks have played better without Smith’s contributions.

During the Knicks’ five-game win streak, Smith has played in about 23 minutes per game, including his benching against the Miami Heat. He’s averaged just over five points per game during that stretch and 11.1 over the past 10. Overall, he averages about two fewer points in Knicks losses than Knicks wins.




8 comments
zippo
zippo

jr is the type of person u must keep on his toes..he is the type of person that as soon as he feels comfortable he becomes overconfident and fails 

Paul Samuels
Paul Samuels

I think that the Knicks should showcase J.R. then sell him while they can get something decent for him. 

NoVaCaInE
NoVaCaInE

Lol at people who killed Melo in the previous thread. A huge problem with the Knicks is PG play. Both on offense and defense. No matter who the Knicks play, every team P&R's us to death. Why? Because our PG's are poor man defenders and 2. Because the Knicks switch 80% of the time. Only and idiot wouldn't exploit a big on a guard every time down. 


If our PG's consistently got into the paint to create for other's and score. If our PG's consistently ran plays and directed players to the right spots on the floor, we wouldn't see that many ISO Melo plays.

Knicks_Fanatic
Knicks_Fanatic

The real issue is that Woody has finally realized that JR needs to be put on a leash. Coaching is an art and coaching JR is difficult. By limiting his minutes and playing TH2 off the bench as the first guard, it's more than words could ever say. If JR wants minutes, he will have to earn them.

Woody has made the right move here. Last year, his hands off approach ignited JR, but after he went down in flames, a change was made.



rico
rico

Sam wasn't this reported like 4 days ago?  

The beauty of he Blogosphere is how fast information and stories get distributed.

The sad part is when you hear the same thing you heard last friday on the following tuesday it seems like an ancient story.  


I'm with Nick White (poster below) who says "up his value and ship him out".



Ratso Rizo
Ratso Rizo

JR won't change overnight but if he decides to grow up he can be great for the team. Additionally, I think he has a drinking problem. Yes he smokes herb but I think alcohol is the more prevalent problem. 

Nick White
Nick White

I think we need him to play some good ball for about 7-10 days so a team gains interest in him...then GET HIM OUT OF HERE. My mind will never change on this guy

buddhabing
buddhabing

@Knicks_Fanatic Problem i have is that he didn't do it sooner. Why did it take him so long to see JR was out of control?I'm not even sure if it's him or a mandate from Dolan that made Woodson finally take action.