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Wednesday, 01 May 2013 11:44

J.R. Smith Jeopardizing Knicks' Advantage Over Celtics

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On the eve of Game 5 against the Boston Celtics, New York Knicks super-sixth man J.R. Smith says that there wouldn't even be a Game 5 had he not elbowed Jason Terry in the closing minutes of Game 3.

From NY Daily News' Frank Isola:

Jason Terry goes by the nickname “Jet,” while the monikers Knicks fans will undoubtedly call the Boston Celtics guard will fall under the category of “parental discretion is advised.”

J.R. Smith, however, isn’t in the mood for name-calling. In fact, the volatile Knicks shooting guard, who was suspended for Game 4 for elbowing Terry in the chin, wouldn’t even acknowledge Terry’s existence when asked about him on the eve of Game 5 at the Garden.


Jason Terry.

“Who’s that? I don’t know who that is. I’m sorry.”

Terry is well known for his trash talking. Even Celtics fans had heard enough from Jet as his trash talking continued through his season-long struggles. All is forgiven quickly in Boston, however, and Terry scored 9 points in the overtime in the Celtics Game 4 win, beckoning memories of the long-time Celtic shooting guard Terry struggled to replace this season. The Knicks are not biting on Jet's bait.

“I don’t need any more motivation, but he did add a little fuel to the fire,” Kenyon Martin said of Terry. “I’m not going back and forth with him, know what I am saying? We are trying to close this series out. It is not about what he is saying; it is about us going out and playing basketball.”

Smith says he should be playing golf right now. The Knicks seem confident they will wrap up the series in five tonight, advancing past the first round for the first time in a decade. Smith's reckless elbow showed that the 2012-13 Sixth Man of the Year still has much maturing to do. Smith, however, simply says he has learned not to throw elbows. But, it's much more than that . The Celtics love to play from behind. They have championship pedigree and though age and injury have taken their toll, the Knicks should not under estimate a team that has continually proven that they can defy odds. Is smith costing the Knicks their 3-0 lead over Boston? Recovering from such a deficit is a seemingly impossible, something that's never been done in NBA history. Though history is still in New York's corner, Smith and the Knicks have left the door open against a franchise that's become accustomed to making history. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett excel under the bright lights of Madison Square Garden. Smith may have fueled the Jet just enough to provide the spark Boston has needed from its depleted bench. Jeff Green continues to prove the worth of his contract and show that he is a relevant cog in the team's post KG-Pierce era. But, the C's are still missing their super-star point guard. Rajon Rondo has been sitting on the sidelines in designer suits, while barking out encouragement to his teammates. Many questions still remain in this series as fans are pondering young Avery Bradley's abilities to run the point guard position. Will Courtney Lee climb out of Doc Rivers dog house or will Jordan Crawford's number be called again? Will Doc play any big-men off his bench tonight? One question the Celtics have continually answered since winning the lone title of this generation is that they like to play the under dog. Smith may have not just provided the suspension that gave the C's life, but now he continues to fuel the fire with trash talking. The biggest question in this series is can Smith, Carmelo Anthony and their Knicks bag their trash? Will the series end Wednesday, on a spring night in Manhattan or will the Celtics provide their fans with another game at home in this series? Tonight's game may answer many of those questions. If Boston can muster up some of that Celtics Mystique, the series will go back to Boston 3-2 and, at that point, anything certainly is possible. 
Nick Gelso

Nick Gelso is the Founding Partner and CEO of North Station Media, CLNS Radio. Gelso has been covering the NBA and Boston Celtics since 2008. He has locker room experience and is an accomplished NBA columnist and radio personality. Gelso has appeared on Boston radio, Las Vegas television, ESPNBoston, CBS Sports. He is co-host of CLNSRadio's flagship production, the Celtics Late Night Show and co-owner of CLNSRadio.


Additionally, Gelso is the co-host of Beats & Eats Podcast. Beats & Eats is an entertainment, foodie and pop-culture podcast network. Beats & Eats hosts podcasts from Hell's Kitchen Chefs' Barret Beyer & Anthony Rodriguez. Actors such as Lydia Cornell and Matt Fahey. Technology expert, and CLNS Columnist, Rich Conte. Hell's Kitchen Chef Dan Ryan hosts a reddit-based, pop-culture podcast. Chopped Chef, Rob Burmeister & Hell's Kitchen Chef, Clemenza host the culinary-comedy podcast, "Chewing the Fat with Big and Beefy."



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