The Knicks franchise is in the midst of change in the front office, with March’s signing of Phil Jackson to head up basketball operations, and on the bench — with today’s official announcement Derek Fisher would helm the team. Keeping in line with the fluctuating team stationed in Manhattan, 2012-13 Sixth Man of the Year J.R. Smith feels he’s in line to start next season.
After winning the 2012-13 Sixth Man award, Smith faltered after signing a three-year, $17.9 million deal last summer, having knee surgery immediately after then serving a five-game suspension after testing positive for cannabis. His shooting fell off in the 2013-14 season, and all of his advanced stats dropped as the Knicks suffered through a horrendous season and missed the playoffs.
So, of course, when a fan asked Smith on Twitter if he was gunning for a second Six Man award this coming year, he told them he was starting — a point of contention with old coach Mike Woodson, and a kerfuffle waiting to happen for the incoming Fisher.
— JR Smith (@TheRealJRSmith) June 10, 2014
Nobody knows what to expect with the Knicks next year following all of the changes. If James Dolan really does let Jackson do his thing, we doubt the iso-obsessed Smith will last long in the triple-post offense Jackson is implementing through Fisher (who won five rings with Jackson using the same Tex Winter Triangle).
One thing we do know about next season’s Knicks, though, J.R. Smith will keep on doing J.R. Smith things. Maybe Fisher wants Smith to start, but if he’s gunning long 2-pointers at the 38 percent clip he recorded on 16-23-foot jumpers last season, Smith still might start, but we doubt he finishes.
Will J.R. Smith start next season for the Knicks?
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