J.R. Smith is one of the most notable players in the history of the NBA for someone who has never made an All-Star Game.
For the most part, he was a bench player over his 16 seasons in the league, but he was a very talented one.
In 977 regular season games, Smith was a starter in only 395 of them, but he has career averages of 12.4 points 3.1 rebounds and 2.1 assists per contest.
He’s also shot a very solid 37.1% from the three-point range on 5.3 attempts per game for his career.
Most recently, he played for the Los Angeles Lakers during the 2020 season when they beat the Miami Heat to win the NBA Championship.
Therefore, the 36-year-old has been out of the league for each of the last two seasons.
Recently, he did an interview with Pierce Simpson of Complex Sports, and they also shared a video clip of the interview that is going viral.
In the clip, Smith was asked if he had been blackballed by the NBA.
Simpson: “Do you feel like you were, I guess blackballed in a way, for lack of a better phrase when it comes to your career?”
Smith: “Yeah, a hundred percent. I mean, anybody can sit here and tell you that that’s a fact. You got those 30 teams, or the top three people on each 30 team and exclude them, give me the 4 through 15th man, just the 4 through 15. Name one of them that’s better than me. I’m sitting there like, bro, I’ve worked out with these dudes. I’ve watched their GM come up to me and ask me like yo why you not playing? You know why I’m not playing. I feel like it’s a whole genre that that happened too. Joe Johnson, who obviously still got game, still plays. Jamal Crawford, still got game, still can play. Nick Young, still got game, still can play. Isaiah Thomas, still got game, still can play.”
The NBA has become so reliant on three-point shooting that there is a case to be made that Smith could still help out a lot of teams.
In 2013, he won the 6th Man of The Year Award with the Knicks, and in 2016 he helped the Cavs complete the greatest comeback in the history of the NBA Finals when they beat the Golden State Warriors in Game 7.
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