Beck: J.R. Smith's deal is only three years

Andy Lyons

Okay!

Hey! Great find by sbknicks, who pointed out this Howard Beck piece filed late Tuesday night correcting all previous reports about J.R. Smith's contract with the Knicks:

Smith’s deal covers a maximum of three years, with a total value of $17.95 million, not the four years and $24.5 million that was widely reported, including in The New York Times, last week.

This is still the most money the Knicks could have offered J.R., but three years with a player option in the third is a bit team-friendlier the four-year deal previously reported. Particularly since J.R.'s knee issues proved to be worse than we knew, it's a bit reassuring that the Knicks didn't invest as deeply in his future as we'd heard. Smith's optional third year at least leaves the possibility of New York having a little extra cap space in the summer of 2015, which has more or less been established as the target restart date.

Anyway, cool. Happy to have J.R. back. Happier to have him back on more reasonable terms than we thought.

Update: I had to write this quickly before, but just to go a little further: This is good news, but weird as shit. Grunwald didn't deny it was a four-year deal on Wednesday's conference call and Marc Berman's conversations with Leon Rose seem to suggest it was J.R. that pushed for the shorter deal (because of Bird rights and stuff)? Is this shorter deal a recent development somehow? If not, how the hell did the four-year report make it this long? Whatever. The Knicks are strange. Still good news, no matter how we got here.

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