The New York Knicks are closing in on a deal to acquire free agent wing J.R. Smith, according to a report from Frank Isola of the New York Daily News.
Because the Knicks are at the 15-player roster limit, they will need to cut someone to make room for Smith. Assume that it won't be Jeremy Lin. The high-scoring, low-conscience Smith spent the first half of the NBA season playing in China, where he signed during the NBA lockout without an out clause.
Smith, 26, spent the last five seasons of his NBA career with the Denver Nuggets, fluctuating in and out of George Karl's doghouse while doubling as one of the NBA's most potent bench scorers. On his best days, Smith can fill up the bucket at a clip reserved for very few. On his worst days, Smith can leave coaches with their heads in their hands as he fires up contested jumpers and makes a string of ill-advised decisions.
During the 2010-11 season, Smith averaged 12.3 points and 4.1 rebounds on 43.5 percent shooting and 39.0 percent from behind the arc. His other suitors include the Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Orlando Magic, Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers.