Not All Role Players Wear Capes

2015 NBA Finals - Game Four

J.R. Smith is by no means a hero or a superstar. He’s not the player you want to see on the back of your son’s jersey, nor the guy you want running your favorite team’s offense come crunch time. Since coming out of high school, Smith has been generally viewed as a glorified gunner. Shooting from anywhere on the floor, it oftentimes seems as though Smith doesn’t have a care in the world. And to be honest, I don’t really think he does. I don’t want to make this seem like a bad thing, because it’s not. J.R. knows his role, and he fills it. He isn’t expected to put up 25 points every night; that’s just not him. A misunderstood shooting guard from North Jersey, Smith’s 2016 campaign finally gave him the lasting reward he’s always wanted.

J.R. Smith is nothing if not entertaining. Whether it’s messing with on-court reporters, taking ridiculously foolish shots, or becoming a team’s PR nightmare, he always manages to find his way into the news.

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(I kid you not when I say that J.R. Smith pictures and gifs can lead you into the depths of the internet. They are never-ending. Proceed with caution.)

With all of these funny occurrences comes the reputation of the team goofball. Sure, that description fits Smith to a T. However there’s more to J.R. Smith than meets the eye. He’s struggled to find himself over the course of his twelve-year career. Whether he likes it or not, his questionable behavior has become the focus of the public. The arrests, tattoos, and unfiltered Instagram posts are what people think of when they hear the name J.R. Smith. As unfair as this seems, he’s brought all of that upon himself. Starting on-court fights and partying in the Big Apple will create unwanted press. But behind all of that is one of the NBA’s greatest family men. Between helping his brother pay for college and constantly returning home for weekend barbecues, J.R. Smith really isn’t just some millionaire athlete partying and living on the West Side. After the biggest night of his entire life, it was the topic of family that seemed to truly overwhelm him. Take a look at this clip below. It’s a rare peek at the J.R. Smith we rarely see and definitely worth the watch.

J.R. Smith is an NBA Champion. He now has more rings than Patrick Ewing, Allen Iverson, John Stockton, Karl Malone, and Charles Barkley. Let that sink in.

This season, and more specifically these playoffs, Smith played on a team that let him be himself. He wasn’t judged for his actions nor benched for bad shots. He stayed out of trouble, and the results followed. The Cleveland Cavaliers let J.R. be J.R. and in return they received the perfect role player. As fans of the NBA, we all should thank them for that. He’s another example of the entertaining figures that pro sports continuously offer us. This may be a small storyline in comparison to the city of Cleveland getting their first title since 1964, however, small stories shouldn’t always be overlooked.


 

LeBron James is without a doubt the Cleveland Cavaliers’ on-court leader. But when it comes to celebrating, J.R. Smith runs the show. To say he enjoyed celebrating with his teammates would be an understatement. However I’m pretty sure he did lose his shirt in the process. Please, J.R., never change.

Let me reiterate something. This man:yep-image-via-www-terezowens-com_

has more championships than Allen Iverson and Karl Malone.

The world’s a funny place, isn’t it?

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