Guess what I heard from this guy on the internet who works for the paper of record. This:
JR Smith will be announced as Sixth Man of the Year this afternoon.
Ol’ Pipes here led the league in bench scoring at 18.1 ppg, so it’s no surprise he’s taking home award. He also plays for the Knicks and is therefore on TV all the time, dunks a lot and is exciting to watch — though as you’ll see in that video, not always entirely for doing good things — so it’s quadrupley no surprise he’s taking this award home. Not to mention, a bunch of us picked him as our Sixth Man of the Year, so I’m sure that probably had to do something to enhance his candidacy.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Smith’s award-winning campaign comes during a season where he can opt out of his contract in the summer. And after eight seasons of preferring to chuck threes, it’s not a coincidence that Smith would post a season where he takes (and makes) a higher percentage of twos than ever before. It’s a neo-classic contract year situation — in that it’s only kind of a contract year, since he isn’t technically in a contract year until he opts out of next year’s deal — and the Knicks are better off for having him during it. (And considering the last two Sixth Men — Lamar Odom and James Harden — were traded the summer after taking home the hardware, maybe losing your best bench player is just the way love goes.)
So yeah, J.R. Smith is our first award winner of the season. How does that make you feel and how do you feel about him winning it? Leave those answers in the comments because we’re all living in J.R. Smith’s world now. Pipes all around.