Mike Woodson, NBA not happy with J.R. Smith
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Mike Woodson was "not happy'' with J.R. Smith for his tweets directed at Pistons guard Brandon Jennings, and he said that if Smith keeps putting himself in these positions, "eventually no team is going to want to deal with you.''
The NBA was unhappy with Smith, too, fining him $25,000 on Friday "for directing hostile and inappropriate language to another player via his Twitter account, in violation of NBA rules.'' Smith was fined the same amount two seasons ago for posting an inappropriate photo of a woman on Twitter.
In this case, Smith, who was suspended the first five games of the season for failing a drug test, was defending his brother Chris after Jennings questioned whether he belongs in the NBA in a tweet that he later removed. Smith seemed to threaten Jennings in one tweet.
"I was not happy about that and that's why we had a behind-the-door meeting with he and Chris [on Thursday] because it's ridiculous,'' Woodson said during his weekly radio interview on ESPN New York Friday. "There's got to come a time where you stop putting yourself in that position. It's going to come a time when you keep doing it, eventually no team is going to want to deal with you. You got to learn from it. Those are the things where I'm trying to get this young man to.''
Woodson already is trying to navigate his way through injuries, keep Iman Shumpert focused amid ongoing trade talks, work with players on minutes restrictions and get the Knicks to defend. It's all contributed to their 3-5 start and the four-game home losing streak they take into Saturday night's game against the Hawks.
"Everything feels cloudy and like a blur at this moment,'' Carmelo Anthony said at the Madison Square Garden Boys and Girls Club in the Bronx, where his foundation distributed food to families in need. "I got to believe that it will turn around.''
Woodson plans to discuss with Amar'e Stoudemire the best ways for him to be productive in his limited minutes. Stoudemire was scoreless in 5:03 Thursday night and has only 14 points in 49 minutes this season.
"I got to help him,'' he said. "It's new for everybody. It's certainly new for him. I don't think in the history of our game we've ever had a player this high-profile dealing with something like this. Certainly from a coach's standpoint, I've never had to deal with restricted minutes. We've got to find a common ground for Amar'e where he's happy, where he can help us win.''
Shumpert continues to be the subject of trade rumors. He's one of the few Knicks with value and they're hoping they can flip him for frontcourt help. The Knicks think that with three point guards, Smith and rookie Tim Hardaway Jr., they have enough in their backcourt.
Woodson said he expects Shumpert to play through the rumors. "I can't tell any player that they're not going to be traded,'' he said. "I'm not in position to do that. But what I can tell a player is it's a business and it's part of the business. Right now you're in a New York Knicks uniform. The only thing you should be worried about is playing and helping us win basketball games.''
Anthony acknowledged that trade rumors "can get to you'' and planned to talk to Shumpert. "I have to have his back and be there for him,'' he said. "I have to tell him just focus on basketball, everything else will take care of itself.''