J.R. Smith has been an interesting personality to follow in the NBA over the years. He has not only been an effective player throughout his career, but he has also been a part of two championship teams with the Cleveland Cavaliers and LA Lakers. The time he has spent on several teams, though, has led to Smith playing with many different types of teammates. Recently, he revealed that while he has liked many of them, there is one former teammate who supposedly supports Donald Trump that he doesn’t like — Sam Dekker.
J.R. Smith has been an effective NBA player for years
While he always keeps things interesting, J.R. Smith has been a talented player throughout his NBA career too.
After starting his career in New Orleans, he became a star for the Denver Nuggets. Smith spent five seasons with the Nuggets and averaged as many as 15.4 points per game in 2009-10 with them. He also helped the Nuggets become a pretty successful team in those years, as they made the playoffs each season he was there and even reached the Western Conference Finals in 2008-09.
Smith then began playing for the New York Knicks in 2011-12 and became even better while in New York. He averaged 18.1 points per game for the Knicks in 2012-13 and ultimately earned the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award.
During the 2014-15 season, Smith then got traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers, and he helped Cleveland have the most success it had ever had in franchise history. The Cavs went to four consecutive NBA Finals while Smith was there and won the NBA title during the 2015-16 season.
After parting ways with the Cavaliers in 2018-19, Smith then did not play much during the 2019-20 NBA season. He was, however, on the Lakers during their run to winning an NBA title, so he is now a two-time NBA champion.
He played with Sam Dekker on the Cleveland Cavaliers
Sam Dekker — the former Wisconsin Badger — did not have an extremely long tenure with the Cleveland Cavaliers, but he played a few games there during Smith’s final season in Cleveland in 2018-19.
Dekker ultimately played in nine games with the Cavaliers that season and averaged just 6.3 points per game. Smith, on the other hand, only appeared in 11 games. They only appeared in five games together.
However, Dekker made a strong impression on Smith.
J.R. Smith does not like Sam Dekker, who supposedly supports Donald Trump
Smith recently appeared on All Things Covered, and he revealed the only former teammate he doesn’t like — Dekker.
“Throughout my whole career, it’s only one teammate I really don’t like. And he know that. And everybody else, I’m just cool with,” Smith said, according to NBC Sports. “This dude Sam Dekker, dog. I can’t – this dude. He did some bulls*** on the bus one day, talking some Trump s***, and I just wasn’t having it.”
Smith then continued but didn’t really give a clear answer as to what Dekker said that ultimately made him made.
“The question he asked, it’s a thought pattern. You’re taught that. It’s the hate you give, I feel like that’s something you’re taught,” Smith said, according to NBC Sports. “The privilege he has, it was taught to him, and he took heed of it and ran with it even further than somebody who’s oblivious to what they have and the life they live. Because some people just go through their life, not necessarily knowing, but not aware and privy to somebody else’s circumstances. He’s a person who’s just very aware of somebody else’s circumstances and want to keep them there, as opposed to try to help him elevate up. And I don’t respect anything about that.”
So, whatever Dekker said rubbed Smith the wrong way. It will be interesting to see if Dekker responds to what Smith is now saying anytime soon.
Stats courtesy of Basketball Reference