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J.R. Smith sounds like blog commenter, says Knicks are contenders

Aug 6, 2012, 12:21 PM EDT

New York Knicks guard J.R. Smith reacts after hitting a three-point shot against the Dallas Mavericks in the first half of their NBA basketball game at Madison Square Garden in New York Reuters

There are some very thoughtful, basketball smart Knicks fans out there. As a whole they know the game.

And then there are the Knicks fans who vastly overestimate how good their team really is and think the franchise is still thought of like it’s 1972.

Apparently, J.R. Smith falls in the later group. The Knicks swingman and designated gunner off the bench told ESPNNewYork.com that he thinks on paper this Knicks team — which has two Olympians — could be as good as any team in the league.

“Right now with the talent we have, what it says on paper is championship all day. But it’s a matter of us going out there and doing it,” Smith said after appearing at an event in Harlem at Nike’s House of Hoops to promote/give away some Nike sneakers to children.…

Smith believes the moves the Knicks made in the offseason give them enough talent to “compete with anybody.”

Um… no.

First off, an offseason that got you Marcus Camby and Jason Kidd does not make you that much better.

I think this discussion starts with how good you think Carmelo Anthony is — if you think he is a top 5 NBA player and leader then you think the Knicks are contenders. I would call him an elite scorer, but would put him more around 10-12, not on the “you can build a title contender around him” level of LeBron James or Kevin Durant.

Bigger than that, LeBron and Dwyane Wade have worked out the chemistry issues on that team, along with Chris Bosh. They play well off each other now, they succeed together on the court. The Knicks are not there. Things are awkward when ‘Melo and Amare Stoudemire share the floor. Their games do not mesh seamlessly, and until they do you can’t discuss them with the Heat. Or the Celtics. (And even if ‘Melo and Amare figure it out, you run into the problem they are not as good as LeBron and Wade.)

The Knicks are going to be good next year. The high end is a three seed, the low end the six. My guess is they get the four or five spot. They could finally advance out of the first round.

But they are not contenders, sorry J.R. They may not even be the best team in the five boroughs.

  1. knightrider1755 - Aug 6, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    J.R. is delusional.

    • saint1997 - Aug 7, 2012 at 5:47 AM

      He is shooting a bit too far but I would like to get the chance to permanently prove myself as a Knicks fan who is part of the above mentioned former group and not the latter group for all those here on the site (we do exist, we are rarer than a Laker fan who is open to other opinions or a Bobcats fan who…no just rarer than a Bobcats fan). If you look at the facts, the Knicks have solved their woes at the PG with Prigioni, a very solid backup, and Ray Felton who has already begun losing weight. Kidd can also add great locker room help. Brewer, Shumpert and Chandler give the Knicks a top 7 defensive side and Melo and Amare have yet to actually have a full training camp together to work out the kinks, something other star teams have done. With great role playing 3 point shooters JR and Novakaine this is a team who is at least a 4 seed next season. (Exasperated breath)

  2. candidohernandez - Aug 6, 2012 at 12:40 PM

    Well let’s take these comments as serious as the source. Cmon now. Knicks will be better but a middle of the road team at best which is an upgrade from 7th seed last year. Problem is Celtics, Nets and Heat got better. Not to mention Bulls still better. Melo definitely is not a top ten player in the NBA right now. Needs to really show NY something this year or he gets into trade talks.

  3. bankai78 - Aug 6, 2012 at 12:45 PM

    “Right now with the talent we have, what it says on paper is championship all day.”

    What paper? The Onion?

    • bougin89 - Aug 6, 2012 at 2:16 PM

      That was exactly my thought. On paper they look like a 4 or 5 seed at best.

  4. cantonbound13 - Aug 6, 2012 at 12:58 PM

    Kurt never misses an opportunity to bash the Knicks & praise LeBron. So predictable.

    • knightrider1755 - Aug 6, 2012 at 3:08 PM

      Better than praising the Knicks and bashing LeBron.

      • cantonbound13 - Aug 6, 2012 at 3:35 PM

        Moron

      • londonaiooo - Aug 6, 2012 at 6:42 PM

        Yes! Well played.

    • jimeejohnson - Aug 6, 2012 at 4:18 PM

      What is there to praise about the Knicks?

      • sellahh - Aug 6, 2012 at 6:52 PM

        Wow, I guess you need to be a very simple human being not to get knightrider’s sarcasm, you two…

  5. Ringside Rants - Aug 6, 2012 at 1:13 PM

    What is Smith supposed to say? “We’re going to be okay. I mean, I wish we had more than what we’ve got and Carmelo Anthony isn’t really that good, but oh well.” Also, Kurt couldn’t pass up the opportunity to subtly mock the people who read and comment on this website, which – in effect – is really just a blog.

    Although I must admit that I am impressed you made it through an entire post without messing up a player’s name or what team they played for. That might be a first, Kurt.

  6. dls612 - Aug 6, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    What he’s suppose to say? The raptors and bobcats probably feel the same way!

  7. mrguyana - Aug 6, 2012 at 3:02 PM

    lets be real the knicks have a decent team but a title i really doubt it. But we will kick but against those nets in the opener.

  8. ez0682 - Aug 6, 2012 at 3:04 PM

    1st of whp is kurt lol a clown. U neva played pro ball in ur life soo $&@12. N u say knicks r gpnna b 4th or 5th in the east ur a straight idiot they r gonna b top two. N yass in paper thy r a chmpionship team. Who is better indiana bulls lol ur strght stupid just like the rest of these idiots in hete with there stupid on knowledgeable coment

  9. thenoblefacehumper - Aug 6, 2012 at 3:35 PM

    “There are some very thoughtful, basketball smart Knicks fans out there. As a whole they know the game.

    And then there are the Knicks fans who vastly overestimate how good their team really is and think the franchise is still thought of like it’s 1972.”

    You could replace the word “Knicks” in these sentences with the name of any other team, and replace “1972” with any date in which the team you’re talking about was good. You’d be correct. EVERY SINGLE FAN BASE has it’s smart realistic fans, and it’s irrational ones. Kurt, this Knicks bashing thing was annoying at first. Now it’s just getting weird. Sorry if you’re still bitter about the 1970 finals (or the 1973 finals), but the way you take every last opportunity to attack the Knicks is immature and, I will repeat myself, weird.

    Oh, and what’s J.R. supposed to say? “No I don’t think we’ll compete for anything, we have all our money tied up in players who don’t complement each other”. While that answer would satisfy your weird anti-Knicks fetish, it wouldn’t have exactly endeared him to the loyal New York fans.

    • thenoblefacehumper - Aug 6, 2012 at 3:39 PM

      “First off, an offseason that got you Marcus Camby and Jason Kidd does not make you that much better.”

      Forgot to mention, this is just false. Maybe you were too busy writing your next post talking about how terrible the Knicks are, but they also acquired Ray Felton, Ronnie Brewer, Kurt Thomas, Pablo Prigioni, and James White. Being in the realistic Knicks fan camp, I am aware that these guys don’t exactly put us over the edge. They can, however, make a difference and I’m not sure why you just left them out.

  10. dysraw1 - Aug 6, 2012 at 4:56 PM

    ok we may not be in contention for the title at this moment but its a long season anything can happen and knick fans can dream like all the others. or we can just say Lebron an his boys will win it again

  11. chicagosworth - Aug 6, 2012 at 7:41 PM

    Figures….

  12. jolink653 - Aug 6, 2012 at 8:52 PM

    Okay really? You want him to say “Yeahhh I think we’re an average team, maybe good enough to get home court in the first round and then lose in the semis, but definitely not a contender”? Every team in the NBA will respond the same way and it’s really unfair for people to call them out on it when they say it because they get killed if they said Yes or No

    And the Knicks have talent on this roster and I really believe that once they get a full offseason together then they will be able to gel and work out all the issues they’ve been having since this roster came together…They added good depth on the bench and they will be a dangerous team

  13. dell444 - Aug 6, 2012 at 9:20 PM

    I don’t know which is worse? Danny Granger calling the Pacers second best in the East or this comment by J.R. Smith. Whatever makes them sleep good a night.

  14. dysraw1 - Aug 6, 2012 at 11:32 PM

    love that JR. how the 73 Mets say it you gotta believe

  15. hartdaddy - Aug 7, 2012 at 12:50 AM

    Why is it always news when a guy thinks his team is good? What the hell is he supposed to say…

    “Contenders? Oh hell no, we suck, we are awful, we have no business playing professional organized basketball, we don’t stand a chance this year, my prediction, we’ll go 0-82, that’s how much I think we suck. for real! Thanks for asking.”

    Seriously, would that have been better? Leave the Knicks alone, let them live, geez.

  16. 24thesho - Aug 7, 2012 at 3:26 AM

    From a writer’s standpoint, I would have used the word, “latter”.

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