The most inspired recruiting pitch since Jesus Shuttlesworth's trip to Big State? Perhaps not, but the New York Knicks certainly applied the full court press on J.R. Smith in a (successful) attempt to convince the high-scoring reserve to take his talents to the Big Apple.
The Oregonian's John Canzano has the details of the Knicks' feverish pursuit of Smith, which began as soon as his airplane touched down in the United States.
Things got so interesting Thursday that Smith hopped a plane from China to LAX, arriving at the airport in the late afternoon, where he was intercepted, his camp said, by a representative for the Knicks. Smith was apparently headed later in the evening to Las Vegas, and according to a source in Smith's family, the Knicks bought a ticket for their guy and sent him along, too.
Tom Ziller calls the Knicks' pitch "Cold War tactics." Others might call it insane. Tom-ay-toes, tom-ah-toes. Either way, it worked.
Some might have been put off by being stalked at the airport, but Smith confirmed via Twitter that he will accept New York's offer, which is reported to be worth $4.3 million over two years.