NBA Rumors: Will Lakers Sign JR Smith?
Will the Lakers sign J.R. Smith? Should they?
NBA’s free-agent market during the season is an attractive source of veteran talent. Teams with serious championship aspirations could always use a savvy, experienced veteran who can give them valuable 10-15 minutes in a playoff game.
There are plenty of valuable players still available to any team such as Carmelo Anthony, Iman Shumpert or Joakim Noah. But the biggest wildcard of them all might just be none other than J.R. Smith.
Despite what people might think upon hearing the name “J.R. Smith”, let’s run through some facts related to Smith’s career:
– One-time champion with the Cleveland Cavaliers
– 13th on the all-time 3-point field goal leaders
– Reliable defender
– Gets you an instant offense off the bench
Another thing we should take into consideration is that he is a former teammate and close friend of LeBron James after all. That’s important because we know LeBron sticks to his buddies, making sure that certain teammates follow him wherever he goes. One thing that tells us enough about their relationship is the 4-year 57 million contract Smith signed in 2016, which followed LeBron’s pressing of the Cavaliers’ front office.
JR’s a Cowboys fan and went wild roasting everybody after they beat the Giants 🤣
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) November 5, 2019
Therefore J.R. looks like a great piece to pick up out of the open market due to mentioned reasons but let’s take a deeper look at the Lakers’ roster situation as well as their needs.
The Lakers’ guard rotation consists of Bradley-Green in the starting lineup,
Cook-KCP-Caruso-Daniels off the bench. The first thing we notice is that every guard on this team has something in common- above-average shooting ability. Which happens to be one of the two main traits of J.R’s game. It’s fairly reasonable to think Smith doesn’t surpass any Lakers’ guard, other than Caruso, in terms of 3-point shooting.
It’s obvious that Smith’s probable role on the Lakers’, spark-plug off the bench, is already addressed. Multiple times.
Besides, the trio of Green, Bradley, and KCP is exceptional defensively, which can’t be said for Smith with the same certainty as 2 or 3 years ago. He showed a huge decline in recent years on the defensive end, plus he is 34 at the moment which is a warning if you search for a defender. Again, J.R. doesn’t beat out his competition here either.
To sum it up, I don’t think the Lakers should sign Smith. They should be shifting focus to find a secondary playmaker. (or simply a playmaker if they consider Rondo a part of their rotation) If Smith was a better at playmaking I could already see him next to LeBron, otherwise, his game is needed on some other team.