Critics like Bill Simmons are chirping that former U of L star Chris Smith (right) only made the Knicks because of his brother J.R.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Chris Smith vs. Dwyane Wade sounds like a mismatch. So does Chris Smith vs. James Harden or Stephen Curry or any other top two-guard in the NBA.
But how about this matchup: Chris Smith vs. Bill Simmons?
I like Smith's chances better. He does not back down. And he's already giving B.S. plenty of what makes him B.S.
Quick recap: Smith, a member of Louisville's 2013 NCAA Final Four team, made the Knicks' opening week roster. He also made it last year, but never played because of a knee injury. He played in the 2013 NBA Summer League, averaging 5 points per game.
Smith has not played in the Knicks' first two games – and he has not stopped hearing the howling from critics who say he only made the team because he's the younger brother of Knicks' star J. R. Smith. Some have even said that Chris' deal was part of the contract that J.R. Smith signed.
Simmons survived on NBA Countdown when Magic Johnson and Michael Wilbon did not. He has no hesitation taking on Chris Smith, J.R. Smith, Kenny Smith or Red Smith, for that matter. He took on Smith on his Twitter feed.
This was Simmons' tweet:
Chris Smith made the Knicks. The Dolan Era is incredible.
Chris Smith was ready to engage. I don't blame him. That's why he's always been a solid player.
People said the same things about him when he jumped from Manhattan College to walk-on at U of L. He turned out to be a tough, reliable player. Not great. But certainly deserving of the considerable playing time that Chris Smith earned from Rick Pitino. He was a 40 percent shooter as a senior and averaged nearly 10 points per game. He played in all 40 games and averaged better than 27 minutes.
Those aren't NBA-starter numbers. He was not drafted. But Chris Smith did many good things at U of L. And he certainly doesn't back down from a challenge. Even from Bill Simmons.
This was his no B.S. response to B.S.:
I love the hate lmao another critic to shut up.
That followed this earlier tweet by Smith:
People mad because I beat the Odds… LOL I love it.
The winner of Round One … Chris Smith.
Not only is he on the Knicks' roster, earning a reported $490,180 this year, his performance on Twitter earned him recognition as the Tweet of the Night from Chris Sheridan, who delivers the best NBA blog in the business. You can read it by clicking here.
Simmons beat the odds going from Boston blogger to the puppeteer of ESPN. Chris Smith is trying to beat the odds by playing in the NBA. So far he's succeeding.