2013 NBA Award Predictions: Where the Knicks stand in the award races

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J.R Smith – Sixth Man of the Year

No other player had made as strong as a case for an award towards the end of the season this year like Smith has. He has been one of the reasons why the Knicks have won 12 straight and at times has been simply unguardable.

Mar 31, 2013; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks shooting guard J.R. Smith (8) puts up a layup against the Boston Celtics during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Knicks won the game 108-89. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Smith hits his shots in the fourth quarter and helps out Anthony when he is on the court since there is no other viable scoring threat on the court at the same time.

He has been tearing it up in April, scoring 24.3 PPG over the last 10 games, all Knicks wins. Those are elite scoring numbers and Smith is sure to cash in if he decides to leave the Knicks this offseason. The only other candidate for this award is the Los Angeles Clippers’ Jamal Crawford. Crawford has been much more of an efficient scorer than Smith but not by much, shooting 44 percent from the floor to Smith’s 41 percent. Smith has shot a lot better recently and has raised his percentage. Knicks fans remember Smith’s wild shooting games but he always seems to hit the big shot in a game or put a dagger at end.

Smith has been extremely exciting to watch this season and has been the Knicks’ most durable player and the only player to play in all 76 games. Not taking anything away from Crawford’s great season, but Smith is more valuable to the Knicks than Crawford is to the Clippers, especially down the stretch. You can’t go wrong with either of them, but Smith might have stolen the award from Crawford with this latest push.

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Tags: 2013 NBA Awards Carmelo Anthony Featured J.R. Smith Mike Woodson New York Knicks Popular