Nuggets guard Smith celebrates a three-point shot in their NBA basketball game against the Timberwolves in Denver

Frustrated J.R. Smith says he likely wont re-sign with Nuggets


They are frustrated in Denver. They have not been able to solve the Oklahoma City Thunder puzzle and are now down 2-0 in their first round playoff series.

J.R. Smith’s frustration boiled over Thursday, to the point he says he may choose not to re-sign with the Nuggets this summer, he told Benjamin Hochman at the Denver Post.

“There’s a strong possibility (he will sign elsewhere) as of right now,” Smith said. “It’s not going the way I planned it to go. It’s a tough situation. I want to be here, I love the fans and everything about the city. It’s just maybe not my fit.”

The Nuggets had a team meeting on Thursday and Smith said the team didn’t have “a pulse” as they regrouped at Pepsi Center.

“Just frustration, just really didn’t have any life in there,” Smith said. “No one was really into it.”

Smith played less than 7 minutes in Game 2 — he was 1-for-6 in a stretch at the end of the first quarter and beginning of the second when Denver was outscored by 16 and the Thunder pulled away for good. Smith never got n the floor in the second half.

So he’s frustrated. Good. If he were happy or even okay with how things have gone for Denver then we’d be talking a bigger problem.

But Smith’s agent should be telling him to be quiet. First off, Denver is a good fit and may be willing to pay more than other teams for Smith’s services (whenever we have a free agent signing period after the lockout). Well, maybe they were willing. This didn’t endear Smith to the Nuggets, questioning his team’s passion in the middle of a playoff series.

That and what team GM just read those quotes and said, “that’s a guy I want in my locker room, a guy who throws the team under the bus when faced with adversity.”

Nuggets fans, sorry. But do you want some good news?

Arron Afflalo says he is good to go and will be back for Game 3. It’s a start. And you know he will bring defense and passion.

Looks like Donovan to keep Andre Roberson, Steven Adams as starters

Los Angeles Clippers v Oklahoma City Thunder
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Billy Donovan was given the head coaching job in Oklahoma City to bring their offense into modern times — and it seems to be working, Russell Westbrook said he feels a lot more space in the system.

But if the Thunder are going to contend for a title, they need a top 10 defense as well — and to do that Donovan is going to keep a Scott Brooks move and continue to start  Andre Roberson and Steven Adams. Check out the starting lineup for their first preseason game Wednesday.

There also was this report via Anthony Slater in the Oklahoman yesterday about a scrimmage at practice.

Durant, Russell Westbrook, Serge Ibaka and Andre Roberson all started for the White team. Nick Collison joined them, but that was only because Steven Adams sat out with back soreness….

Donovan said the teams weren’t split by accident. That’s how they’ve been divided in practice. So at this point, it seems Roberson is this team’s starting shooting guard and Adams is the team’s starting center.

This is the smart move. Last season the lineup of Westbrook, Roberson, Durant, Ibaka and Adams was +13.4 points per 100 possessions over their opponents. Roberson and Adams are there for defense — neither brings much offensive game to the floor, but when you have Westbrook and Durant and only one ball between them, you don’t need more offensive threats. You’re going to get plenty of points.

If they can just stay healthy, Oklahoma City is a team to be feared.

Knicks’ legend Harry Gallatin passes away at age 88

Harry Gallatin
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The Hall of Fame player behind the original iron man streak is with us no more.

Knicks’ legend Harry Gallatin passes away at age 88, the team confirmed Wednesday.

Gallatin led the Knicks of the late 1940s and into the 1950s, when he set a then record playing in 610 consecutive games. Nicknamed “The Horse,” he was a beast on the boards who averaged 15.3 rebounds a game one season and averaged 11.9 boards and 13 points per game over the course of his 10-year career. He’s still fourth all time in total rebounds in Knicks franchise history.

Gallatin was a seven-time All-Star and twice All-NBA selection. After his playing days, he spent many years as the athletic director at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

Our thoughts are with his family and friends.