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No player was more self-centered this season than J.R. Smith against the Milwaukee Bucks.
On December 18, 2013, one week before Christmas, Earl Smith III started shooting. That's not an unusual activity for Smith; he's attempted 11.1 field goals per game in his career. Except on this special night, he kept shooting and shooting, with no regard for effectiveness or efficiency.
When the final buzzer sounded, he had attempted 17 three-pointers in an NBA game. He hit five of them. No player in New York Knicks history had matched that egregious performance. Only three other players in league history have taken so many threes and hit so few.
That night, Smith confirmed his reputation as an unapologetic gunner, in that he did not apologize for his gunning. He was surprised himself he had shot so much, but he expressed no misgivings.
"But trust me give me that chance again I'll shoot it again!"
Beyond the chucking, there's also the matter of his show of fraternity to Chris Smith.
Mike Woodson told Frank Isola of the New York Daily News that Chris had a better chance of making the Knicks this fall because he's J.R.'s little brother.
“I look at him just like I look at J.R., though J.R. is the guy who played in a uniform and has been very productive for us. I have a great deal of respect for that family,” Woodson said. “That’s his brother. I respect that. We got to make some decisions. What those decisions will be, I don’t know."
So when Chris came up from the D-League Erie Bayhawks and rejoined the Knicks bench, it was disheartening to see Earl treat his family with a straight shot to the jingle bells.
When it comes to the NBA, there's only one appropriate kind of Jingle Bells, and that's the kind Rasheed Wallace and company sing. What went down between the Smith represents a total lack of Christmas spirit.