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J.R. Smith 'extremely surprised' by reaction to shoelace incident

J.R. Smith looks on from during a game

J.R. Smith looks on from during a game against the San Antonio Spurs. (Nov. 10, 2013) Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

PHILADELPHIA - A bewildered-sounding J.R. Smith said Saturday that he doesn't know when he is going to play again for the Knicks. He also said he is "extremely surprised" by the reaction to the recent shoe-untying incident, adding that it is something that he has been doing for years.

"Honestly, I've been doing it for four, five years, and I've only seen it from the joking side," he told reporters at the Knicks' shootaround at Temple University. "It is what is. I guess some people don't have the sense of humor that others have."

Smith was benched for Thursday's win over the Heat after the league fined him $50,000 for attempting to untie an opponent's shoe in consecutive games. Though Smith participated in the team's shootaround, Knicks coach Mike Woodson would not say whether he would be in the team's lineup for tonight's game against the Sixers.

"I'm not addressing J.R.," he responded to repeated inquiries about the guard's situation.

Smith said he did meet with Woodson on Friday, but would not say what the two talked about. Woodson has not talked publicly about Smith since his regular radio segment on ESPN New York's Stephen A. Smith Show on Wednesday. In that segment he called Smith "unprofessional" and said he needed to "grow up."

"He's been telling me that since I got here," Smith said Saturday morning. "Honestly, growing up. I don't know if I really understand the true meaning of it."

A fan favorite last season when he was named the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year, Smith's head now seems to be swimming by how fast things have turned on him. He intimated that it probably wouldn't have happened if he was playing better.

"It's what have you done for me lately, pretty much," Smith said. "You miss shots, it's going to happen."

Smith has struggled this season as he makes his way back from offseason nee surgery. His scoring average has dropped from 18.1 last season to 11.4 points, while he is shooting just 32 percent.

New York Sports