It certainly has been a year to remember for J.R. Smith and the New York Knicks.
Others might choose to reflect on the year when Smith helped lead New York back into playoff contention and broke records with his scoring. That's exactly what the 10th-year guard did Sunday afternoon, setting the franchise's three-point record for a single game against the Miami Heat, as SportsCenter reports:
J.R. Smith just set a Knicks record for most 3-pt FG in a game with 10.— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 6, 2014
He also set a record with his 22 attempts, as Tom Haberstroh of ESPN.com noted before Smith heaved up one more from behind the arc:
J.R. Smith has now tied an NBA record with 21 3-pt attempts in a single game. (Damon Stoudamire went 5/21 back on 4/15/2005).— Tom Haberstroh (@tomhaberstroh) April 6, 2014
NBA on ESPN provided a shot chart for Smith's performance:
Tommy Beer of BasketballInsiders.com also noted a pretty unbelievable stat comparison to another NBA player:
Dwyane Wade has attempted a total of 28 three-pointers this season... JR Smith attempted 22 three's this afternoon.— Tommy Beer (@TommyBeer) April 6, 2014
Even Steph Curry's mouth was watering at the prospect of that many treys.
Missed this last night but JR shot 22 3's last night? That's downright amazing— Stephen Curry (@StephenCurry30) April 7, 2014
As for the game, the East-rival Heat downed the Knicks, 102-91, who dropped their second straight contest after winning three consecutive heading into Friday night.
The Knicks have rattled off a 12-5 record following a seven-game losing streak in late February and early March. Much of that success is thanks to Smith's resurgence, as he's averaged 18.1 points per game over that stretch.
Does Smith's resurgence make the Knicks an East contender?
When asked about the Knicks' playoff hopes and if they could be "dangerous in the playoffs," team president Phil Jackson immediately brought up Smith, according to Fred Kerber of the New York Post, saying, "Well, with J.R. playing at the level he’s playing at now, yes."
Both records give a pretty good indication of who Smith is as a player. The boom-or-bust potential of Smith gives the Knicks hope in the upcoming playoffs. Smith and the likes of Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire have a chance to turn around the fate of the franchise in the second half of the season.
But with a schedule coming up starting Friday that includes the Toronto Raptors twice with the Chicago Bulls and Brooklyn Nets sandwiched in between, the Knicks will need the good Smith and his superstar teammates to shine.
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