Lakers Rumors: The Lakers need to do the right thing and sign J.R. Smith

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) - Los Angeles Lakers
(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) - Los Angeles Lakers /
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Lakers Rumors
(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

People will call J.R. Smith a head case, but the dude can play basketball.

When the Cleveland Cavaliers won the NBA title, everyone remembers the LeBron James block on Andre Iguodala. People want to remember the Kyrie Irving shot over Stephen Curry to win the NBA Finals. Those are superstars that made the plays they are required to make. Take nothing away from these guys, but J.R. Smith’s contributions got overlooked. He may have been that 3rd player for the Cavs in that game, the Lakers are begging for now presumably in Lakers rumors.

Remember the Cavs were down at halftime. Smith got hot in the third quarter with 8 quick points to cut into the Warriors lead, getting Cleveland back into the game. Now let’s talk about that Iguodala block. Watch Smith on this play.

What he did here saved the series. With Stephen Curry and Andre Iguodala pressuring with a 2-on-1 fast break, watch how J.R. correctly jabs at Curry and gets back to challenge Iguodala. If he doesn’t it’s a dunk. But this small detail allows two things.

  1. It forces Iguodala to bring the ball down to avoid Smith’s challenge to lay the ball up 
  2. LeBron gets an extra half second to get back and block the shot. 

Oh by the way, J.R. was the only Cavs player not named LeBron James or Kyrie Irving to score in double figures.

Is he the athlete he once was earlier in his career? PFFT! No. But he does have the understanding of high stakes pressure that could be potentially very important in a series where someone outside of Anthony Davis, LeBron James, can score in the small ball lineup.

Lake Show Life is not trying to convince anyone that J.R. Smith is an elite defender by any stretch of the imagination. He’s 34 years old. But he will be able to do a serviceable job of just trying to make it harder for opponents at times during the playoffs.

Now to the good stuff. This dude can shoot from anywhere.