There was much outrage among New York Knicks fans shortly before the season when the team elected to keep point guard Chris Smith, the younger brother of J.R. Smith, instead of holding onto another big body.
Smith is heading to the Knicks D-League affiliate once the season starts next week, but as things played out it looks like him sticking around looks even more foolish by the day, especially when you hear the comments that came from certain members of the organization.
It was always viewed that keeping the younger Smith was a package deal to keep the reigning Sixth Man of the Year in blue-and-orange, and that looks even more like the case now.
According to Yahoo! Sports Adrian Wojnarowski, he cites a source who says former general manager Glen Grunwald “never wanted” to sign Chris, and that the call came down from above him.
That has James Dolan written all over it.
In addition, Wojnarowski writes that some Knicks coaches don’t believe Smith is a D-League player, let alone an NBA player. One GM called the younger Smith “maybe the worst player in the history of the Summer League.”
Within the Knicks coaching staff, they believe Chris Smith doesn’t even have the talent to be an NBA Development League player—never mind worthy of a roster spot. One opposing GM called him “maybe the worst player in the history of the [NBA] summer league.”
If that is indeed the case and if you have watched Smith play, you know it is, it makes the Knicks look foolish once again being the fact that they have handed Smith, who has yet to play in a regular-season game, two guaranteed contracts in two years.
This year, the team will have to pay every cent of his $490,180 salary since he made the opening-night roster, but it is very unlikely that Smith will ever play in a regular season NBA game.
There are plenty of things wrong with the Knicks this season, but two important pieces stick out- Smith’s contract and Dolan.
The Knicks should know just how valuable the 15th roster spot is. In the last two years the likes of Jeremy Lin and Chris Copeland made impacts from securing that final spot.
Then you look at a current roster that is void of an extra big body because Dolan just had to make sure Smith got a roster spot.
There are plenty of problems with this Knicks team, but Dolan getting involved and making sure Smith secured a roster spot is a major one. This is not a good way to run an NBA franchise and apparently Dolan will never learn his lesson.
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