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J.R. Smith Says He Lost Passion for Basketball When He Played for New York Knicks
- Updated: December 28, 2019
Smith played 213 games for the Knicks over four seasons from 2011 to 2015 before he was dealt to the Cavaliers in January 2015. During that time, Smith had off-the-court troubles and saw the Knicks drop from a division-winning team during the 2012-13 season to a team that was 5-31 at the time of the Cavs deal.
With the Cavaliers, Smith seemed to be reborn and became part of the team’s historic comeback to win the 2016 NBA title. That comeback played a part in helping him obtain a new four-year contract in October 2016.
However, once the Cavs collapsed last season, Smith’s relationship with the team deteriorated after he accused management of tanking in order to obtain a high draft pick. Smith was subsequently banished from the team before being released last summer.
The 34-year-old Smith has yet to sign with any other team since his release, but it now appears that his relationship with the Cavaliers, like with the Knicks, has also soured. He’s stated that he doesn’t want his number retired by the team because of his stormy exit.