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JR Smith Drops Truth Bomb On His Cleveland Days: "I'm Not An A**hole."

JR Smith Drops Truth Bomb On His Cleveland Days: "I'm Not An A**hole."

The NBA has seen a lot of colorful characters over the 75 years it has been a league. One of the modern superstars who was often clubbed in with that group is JR Smith. Smith was not as clean-cut as many expect athletes to be, as he lived the way that was truest to him. He got a lot of criticism for it during his stops in Denver, New York, and Cleveland, but he never let it deter him. 

Smith was a crucial part of the Cleveland Cavaliers during their reign of terror over the Eastern Conference. While he is best remembered for his mistake at the end of Game 1 in the 2018 Finals, he was one of the most important players in the Cavs system. 

Smith's tenure with the Cavs ended sourly in 2019 after the departure of LeBron James and the firing of Ty Lue. The team was positioning itself to tank, upsetting veterans like Kevin Love and Smith. While Love stuck it out and is still on the team, Smith was waived by the team. He opened up on his departure and being misunderstood on the Road Trippin' podcast with fellow former Cavs in Richard Jefferson and Channing Frye. 

"I probably would have tried to stick it out longer just because of the relationships I built and the people like Channing, Kyle Korver, Kyle got traded anyway. What people don't realize about me is that I am not an a**hole. When I walk into the facility, I see these guys on the training table and I'll go speak or have fun with the trainers. I enjoyed that part, when I got up in the morning to go to work, I had fun. I loved being around the people I am around. When that's interrupted by someone that feels like I am not working up to par or doing whatever needs to be done for the team, then that's different. I am not as complex as people make it out to be."

Smith didn't get another contract in the 2018-19 season and sat the year out. He was picked up for the bubble in 2019-20 by the Los Angeles Lakers, winning another championship by LeBron's side. James and Smith were seen working out together in the offseason as well.

Even though it may seem like he was the fourth or fifth best player in Cleveland during their run from 2015 to 2018, Smith is a franchise great for his contributions in that era, becoming the fifth leading 3-point scorer in Cavaliers history in his time with the team.