J.R. Smith’s improved performance is one of the more interesting nuances in the Cleveland Cavaliers’ recent turnaround. Per a Q&A with NBA.com, it’s clear that the guard took a long look at the man in the mirror, as he basically admitted how much New York City’s nightlife affected his game in the worse way.
This is what Smith had to say:
I think this is the best situation for me, ’cause there’s nothing but basketball. There’s nothing you expect but basketball. There’s nothing, there’s no going out, there’s no late nights. There’s video games, basketball and basketball. So it’s a great thing, ’cause I go back to where I came from. When I grew up, I never, I wasn’t allowed to go out. I missed my prom because I went to an AAU tournament, and all that stuff. For me, it was basketball, basketball, basketball. And then when I got in the situation where I was at an early age, it was more, alright, let me see what this life is about, as opposed to just keep going. So now, I get the chance to get back to my roots.
When you replace that with stuff off the court, then you’re taking away from what made you who you are, or what got you to a certain point. It was kind of pulling me down in a sense, of not getting enough rest, not doing things you’re supposed to be doing, things you’re used to doing. So when you start missing those shots you’re supposed to make, especially wide-open shots, it was like, alright, what’s going on, what’s going on? Instead of looking at what it is, you’re reverting to that even more, instead of going back to the basics. So I think that’s the greatest part about being here.
It’s funny to see Smith speak indirectly about what pulled him down as a New York Knick. Especially, when you consider that Rihanna blasted him for sliding in her DMs.
Of course, Black Twitter followed suit, serving Smith slander to accompany any air ball or bricked bucket.