J.R. Smith and the Cleveland Cavaliers have not yet reached a free agent deal. Though Smith is expected to re-sign, it remains questionable regarding how long will he wait and how much will he sign.
The 30-year-old shooting guard is currently facing a familiar situation with last year’s free agency. J.R. Smith turned down his $6.4 million player option and explored the free agency market. Unfortunately, no one showed interest to give him a higher deal and ended up signing $5 million per season.
As of now, J.R. Smith is still a free agent. Steve Kyler of Basketball Insider reported that the Cleveland Cavaliers have offered Smith a multi-year deal worth $10 million annually. However, the veteran SG is asking for a higher offer and there were reports saying that he wants $15 million per season.
J.R. Smith was undoubtedly one of the main contributors for the Cavaliers in the recent NBA Finals. Smith showed his efficiency on both ends and knocked down crucial three-pointers for the Cavaliers. After signing a new contract, LeBron James asked the Cavaliers to give Smith the contract he demands.
“Lastly, let’s get J.R. [Smith] done. It’s that time.” James said.
No one can blame Smith for asking a higher salary. Iman Shumpert and Tristan Thompson have received a decent contract when they become free agents last year. Also, Timofey Mozgov took a monstrous contract from the Los Angeles Lakers despite averaging five minutes per game in the postseason.
“I know you guys are going to ask me about my contract situation. You’ve got my agent’s number so you all can call him. Rich Paul. Y’all know what it is.” Smith said.
Should the Cavaliers give what Smith demands, they will be hit by the luxury tax again. According to Dan Feldman of Pro Basketball Talk, the Cavaliers will be paying around $43.75 million on total money spent for the 2016-17 season on Smith’s contract alone, once he gets $15 million.
The question is how much the Cleveland Cavaliers value J.R. Smith. They have given most of their starters a decent contract after showing an impressive performance. Smith played a major role behind the Cavalier first NBA championship title.
Is the Cleveland Cavaliers undervaluing J.R. Smith? Share your opinions in the comment box below.
Photo Courtesy: FirstEnergy Corp/Flickr.com