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 /
6 of 7
Lakers Rumors
(Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Like him or not, the man can outshoot anyone on the Los Angeles Lakers roster. Period. 

Let’s just assume that the Lakers rumors are true and the two players that will be signed will be either Dion Waiters or J.R. Smith. That means the team will still be without a decent playmaker when LeBron James sits down. That means the roster needs a player than can get his own shot and knock down 3 pointers. Umm…okay.

When the Cleveland Cavaliers made their last Finals run, most experts didn’t think the Cavs had enough to outlast Toronto and Boston. But if J.R. Smith didn’t step up to be a really good 3 and D player with LeBron that year, they probably do not make the NBA Finals.

J.R. Smith shot 37.5% from the land of three for the Cleveland Cavaliers in their last NBA Finals trip back in 2017-18. Bottom line, he would be an upgrade at the shooting position. Whether he plays guard in the big lineup or wing in the small lineup, it doesn’t matter.

The Los Angeles Lakers are built around LeBron and Anthony Davis and they don’t need Smith to hit all of the shots he takes, but keep his proven track record to hit the important shot. For this to work, there has to be trust. LeBron has to know that when it’s time to hit 3-point shots when the shot clock is running down, someone  will be in the corner, ready, willing and able to knock it down.

J.R. is that guy.

Now let’s go upstairs to the front office. Here’s what you do to handle a mercurial, sensitive shooter that can catch fire for weeks.