September 19, 2016, 9:01 am
JR Smith will be skipping Cleveland’s minicamp according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst.
Smith and the Cavs are still hung up on a new contract for the shooting guard, as Smith is coming off a contract that promised him just one year and $5 million. In this cap environment, and with some of the contracts handed out to other shooting guards, Smith is right to hold out for his market value or something close to it.
Smith waiting is probably the right call for a few reasons. You never know what will happen in terms of injuries around the league so while he’d prefer to stay in Cleveland he could land himself a rich deal elsewhere. It also doesn’t seem all that bad for a veteran guy to miss minicamp. It’s not the most rigorous thing around but every little bit helps out.
Both Smith and Cleveland want to reunite. It makes a lot of sense to bring the band back together and I expect the sides to compromise before another team emerges as a serious threat. Smith’s re-signing in Cleveland has been one of the summer’s open secrets so this isn’t worth fretting over just yet.
It also bears repeating that Smith is represented by Rich Paul, the man who handled Tristan Thompson’s contract negotiations last season. Thompson missed the entire season before agreeing to terms and it didn’t seem to hurt the Cavs in the long run.
While an impasse is never ideal, negotiations seem far from hostile. Expect JR to sign back on in Cleveland eventually.