Free-agent veteran shooting guard JR Smith is still waiting on an NBA team to pick him up before the playoffs, but while he’s at home watching the games, the former Cleveland Cavaliers champion offered a prediction for the 2020 NBA Finals matchup.
An impromptu Q&A on Instagram for Smith answered a fan question about who will be in the Finals, to which Smith, 34, answered with the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat.
More Nuggets from JR Smith’s Instagram on Tuesday.
— 👑📍Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson, M.A. (@ScoopB) February 25, 2020
The Lakers would not be a surprise entrant in the Finals to represent the Western Conference. The team, led by three-time champion and four-time MVP star forward LeBron James, is first in the West at the moment and also has co-star Anthony Davis, a seven-year All-Star power forward. L.A. has the fifth-best defense in the league with multiple tall and long defenders guarding the basket.
The Heat, however, are a surprise pick by Smith. Miami is by no means a slouch this season, with Jimmy Butler in charge in his first season in South Beach alongside young gunners Tyler Herro, Kendrick Nunn, and Duncan Robinson. The Heat have a narrow margin for the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference, but beyond the playoff picture they have uphill competitive in the form of reigning champion Raptors and the powerhouse Milwaukee Bucks.
Smith, who was waived by the Cavs last summer, won a ring with his friend James in Cleveland, later taking a topless tour with the Larry O’Brien trophy. Smith has been long rumored to join the Lakers, but he revealed today he has not spoken to either L.A. team.