The Cleveland Cavaliers were left increasingly short-handed after Timofey Mozgov hurt his shoulder during Thursday night’s victory over the Milwaukee Bucks. The Russian center will be out for at least the next 10-14 days, joining fellow starters Kyrie Irving and Iman Shumpert on the sidelines. If the accusation levied against J.R. Smith is true, though, the Cavaliers will have much more to worry about than playing with an ever-depleted roster.
According to the New York Daily News, Cleveland’s streaky scorer allegedly choked a high-schooler in New York City earlier this month after he was heckled for being traded from the New York Knicks.
Former New York Knicks guard J.R. Smith has been accused of choking a 19-year-old high school student in Chelsea after the younger man quipped about the hoopster’s trade to Cleveland.
The teen, Justin Brown, who wears braces and hails from Harlem, was with pals who chided Smith for ignoring their fan request for a photo.
Smith is seen on a cell phone video walking away from the group, sources said.
“That’s why New York kicked you out, yo!” Brown remarked.
Brown told cops that after the verbal brush, Smith, who is 6-foot-6 and 225 pounds, checked him against the exterior of the building and put his hands around Brown’s neck, police sources said.
The Daily News also reports that police were notified of the incident three days after it initially occurred. Smith’s lawyer, Alex Spiro, told the paper that the allegation against his client is “completely false.”