J.R. Smith whining about playing time, leaving Nuggets hurts comeback odds vs. Thunder

Categories: Sports

J.R. Smith.
Nuggets fans have marveled at J.R. Smith's behavior since the Carmelo Anthony trade. Everything about him -- his attitude, his demeanor on and off the court, his shot selection -- seemed so much more mature that the idea of re-signing him after the season didn't seem like such a crap shoot. But thanks to comments he made yesterday, it does now.

As quoted in the Denver Post, Smith bitched about only playing six minutes during the game two playoffs debacle against the Oklahoma City Thunder Wednesday -- a decision coach George Karl explained by noting that the Nugs were a staggering minus-17 when J.R. was on the floor. Smith declared that there's a "strong possibility" he won't re-up with Denver, declaring that the squad might not be "my fit."

What's wrong with these statements? Every damn thing. In case Smith has lost track, the Nuggets are down 2-0 to the Thunder, with the second loss being so singularly humiliating that plenty of prognosticators are already counting them out. The only way they can get back into the series is with an intense, focused effort at home on Saturday -- one in which the many cogs in the Nugs machine are turning in unison. The last thing Karl and company need is a player demanding more time in the spotlight, or else. That's a formula for disunity -- and a quick exit from the post-season.

Yes, the Nuggets could use Smith's offensive punch -- and when he's on target, he can make the scoreboard flash like a slot-machine jackpot. Problem is, he's still too inconsistent, and when his shots aren't falling, he's apt to sulk, point fingers and poison the all-for-one, one-for-all atmosphere that's predominated post-Melo.

Denver's current predicament in regard to OKC certainly isn't all Smith's fault -- not even close. But yesterday, he put himself before his fellow players when only teamwork will prevent the Nuggets from getting bounced from the playoffs.

Stupid. And so very J.R.

More from our Sports archive: "Denver Nuggets-Oklahoma City Thunder playoffs matchup: The mighty vs. the many."


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11 comments
dcafe
dcafe

Karl has to go. His attitude toward J.R. Smith is disgusting and he is sacrificing the team to make his petty points. J.R. needs to have adequate playing time, WITH THE STARTERS, NOT THE SCRUBS, to get into his groove, and Karl is determined to see that it doesn't happen. Embarassing.

KB
KB

I think Oo and I are the only ones here that have actually watched our Nuggets all season! JR Smith has earned way more respect than he's been shown here and by coach Karl. But maybe y'all can't help it; maybe y'all have cancer in yo headz!

KB
KB

I've watched J.R. Smith score a bundle of 3 pointers in the past few home games I've been to. I was upset that he was singled out so negatively just for having a 5 minute slump. He deserved to be benched for a bit but NOT the rest of the game. And when ANY of us wheels ain't gettin' greased---well we all squeak then. Don't lie 'bout dat!!!

Chris
Chris

Earl is a whiny baby and his Transformer tattoo is stupid. I feel I can say that now. It's like he "transforms" into an easy-bake oven whenever he has an off day. Go pout in the corner if you have to but when you chump up the game don't point fingers and threaten to walk.... Lord knows we have more important concerns than changing your emotional diaper.

Solosniper_1
Solosniper_1

Best player on offense? Hardly. He's got potential to be, but as pointed out, he's very inconsistent. I think you'll see a different looking squad with affalo back in the line up tomorrow. Gallo will play tremendously better, and westbrook will be silenced. Durant will be durantt ,but Denver will win. JR quit whinning and focus, you'll get more PT if you hit some shots and play better D. Period.

Oo
Oo

Seriously, there is no excuse for only giving 6 minutes of playing time to the best player you have on offense.

Oo
Oo

He's right though. George Karl should have played Smith more. Gallinari is out there making too many mistakes, yet Karl refuses to give Smith his due.

Michael Roberts
Michael Roberts

I hope you're right about Afflalo being back, Solosniper 1. The whole team seems to play better defense when he's on the floor. Thanks for the post.

Kmac45
Kmac45

Baloney! Smith is a big baby whose pouting affects his play and the team. The team can rebound and I hope the other players ignore Smith's whining and get focused on Game 3. And adios J.R. when the season ends. He has potential to be great and is pissing it away.

Oo
Oo

His play hasn't been negatively influenced, at all. The Nuggets were -17 at the end of the Game anyways so... did that happen in 6 minutes?

His team is out there making mistakes anyways, why should George Karl compound the problem by taking away playing time from his MOST TALENTED FUCKING OFFENSIVE PLAYER. Its just stupid.

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