Highlights from J.R. Smith’s Saturday night tweetstorm

Cleveland Cavaliers J.R. Smith (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Cleveland Cavaliers J.R. Smith (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

Cleveland Cavaliers shooting guard J.R. Smith had quite a few interesting tweets on Saturday night.

Cleveland Cavaliers shooting guard J.R. Smith has been a much more mature version of himself lately, taking on a mentorship role with the Cavs and publicly discussing his biggest mistakes with both acceptance and self-forgiveness.

One of those mistakes is forgetting the score in a tied game at the end of regulation in Game 1 of the 2018 NBA Finals.

An ”honest mistake,” as Smith calls it (per The Undefeated’s Jesse Washington), it could be one of the most infamous NBA Finals gaffes in league history and it’s one Smith still gets criticized for by the public at large.

In the midst of Smith’s Saturday night tweet-storm, he would find himself defending his actions — right or wrong — again.

As he did last week when asked by reporters about moving on from his Game 1 mistake, Smith would ask if his mistake in Game 1 is truly what cost the Cleveland Cavaliers the championship last season.

Expanding on his original tweet, Smith would add that the Golden State Warriors were simply the better team. He’d just like to take responsibility for his mistake and move on.

To his credit, Smith is right on three counts:

First, his mistake wasn’t the lone reason the Cleveland Cavaliers lost in Game 1 or lost the championship series.

Second, the Warriors were the better team last season; they had more elite players at the top of their rotation and far better defensive habits.

Third, he should be allowed to take responsibility for his mistakes and move on from them. Particularly if fans can remember the many times Smith’s three-point prowess or perimeter defense helped turn a game or series around for the Cavs.

However, no matter how difficult, downplaying the Cavs’ chances to win a seven-game series if they won Game 1 is folly.

Momentum, confidence and LeBron James not having to play with an injured hand — assuming that the way Game 1 ended is what caused him to angrily punch a whiteboard — would have all contributed to the Cavs’ efforts against the Warriors in Game 2 and beyond.

Coming from down 3-1 in the 2016 NBA Finals was a historic event in the league and though the Cavs had lost Kyrie Irving and the Warriors had signed Kevin Durant since that series, if there’s any team that should never count themselves out it was the Cavs.

Speaking of Durant, Smith doesn’t respect the two-time NBA Finals MVP’s decision to leave the Oklahoma City Thunder and join the Warriors, a team that not only had been to two consecutive NBA Finals without him but a team that his Thunder were one game away from defeating in the 2016 Western Conference Finals.

Durant is still like family to him though.

Staying true to himself, there was also a fairly humorous segment of Smith’s Saturday night.

Asked by a Twitter user if “Shirtless J.R.” would make an appearance if the Cleveland Indians win a World Series, Smith didn’t disappoint.

Smith’s shirtless celebrations have endeared him to Clevelanders.

The first time “shirtless J.R.” made an appearance was after the Cavs won the 2016 NBA Finals; Smith would take his shirt off that night while celebrating the team’s championship in Las Vegas and it would remain off through the team’s championship parade.

Fan fever reached it’s heights when there were shirts being made to resemble his bare torso.

Months later, Smith would appear shirtless in Game 7 of the 2016 World Series as the Indians faced the Chicago Cubs.

A New Jersey-native and proud of it, Smith will always love Cleveland and consider it his second home.

Through the ups and downs of Smith’s time with the Wine and Gold, he’s grown a lot from the time he’s arrived and it’s happened right in front of Cleveland’s eyes.

As far as a players’ meaning to a franchise, Smith is one of the most entertaining and was one of the most valuable members of the Cavs when they won their first championship in NBA history and ended a 52-year championship drought for Cleveland’s professional sports teams.

Fighting for playing time on a roster filled with wings, Smith’s last season with the Land could be this season.

light. Related Story. Should J.R. Smith feel targeted by the NBA?

If it is, fans would be better served by remembering the great times that Smith has brought to the Land more than just his mistake in Game 1.