Breaking news at this hour! The Knicks are very close to bringing back J.R. Smith. It's just a matter of the details. Frank Isola had it first (by a matter of seconds):
Knicks are working to finalize a contract extension with J.R. Smith but nothing is official yet.— Frank Isola (@FisolaNYDN) July 3, 2013
Adrian Wojnarowski adds:
Knicks, Smith are still finalizing years and options in deal, league sources tells Y!— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 3, 2013
Assuming the Knicks are going to pay J.R. the most they can pay him, this'll be a deal between two and four years averaging a bit over $5 million per year. Given their recent contract-shedding, I imagine the Knicks are pushing for two years, but I don't know how J.R.'s not even fielding official offers from other teams (that we've heard of) affects that. I will add updates when I see updates. Remember that, no matter what, nothing will be official until July 10.
For now: It sounds like J.R. Smith is gonna be a Knick again. EARRRRRRLLLLLLLLLLLL
Update (8:05 PM):
Earl Smith, J.R.'s father, told Post nothing will be signed until Friday. Still can get better offer. So far none have bowled J.R. over.— Marc Berman (@NYPost_Berman) July 4, 2013
Update (8:16 PM):
Earl Smith told The Post a "crazy'' offer could come in Friday after Howard deal is finalized but seems unlikely.— Marc Berman (@NYPost_Berman) July 4, 2013
Man, Earl Smith is something else.
Update (8:31 PM):
Isola says the contract is for four years and league average salary, which is the absolute most it can be. No word yet on options or anything like that.
Update (8:43 PM):
The Knicks have talked to Smith about a two-year package (worth roughly $11.5M). After the two years are up, Smith could then re-sign with the Knicks with full Bird rights and get a maximum contract. It is unclear which package Smith prefers.
Update (9:58 PM):
I changed the word "finalizing" to "working on", because the Smith deal doesn't sound as final as we initially thought. It still sounds to me like it'll get done and agreed upon, but maybe not for a couple days.