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Dan Gilbert reminds everyone how J.R. Smith helped the Cavs win a title

Billy Preston

Cavs owner Dan Gilbert put his general manager Koby Altman at the wheel of any potential deals for veteran swingman J.R. Smith, just as he has when it comes to contract negotiations with acting coach Larry Drew. Altman decided to put the youth movement in full swing, sitting Smith alongside fellow veterans Kyle Korver and Channing Frye to maximize their minutes on the floor.

Yet Gilbert gave his usual spiel on his appreciation for Smith’s body of work in a Cavs jersey.

“First of all, we appreciate J.R. and everything he has done for the franchise,” Gilbert said of Smith, according to Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com. “You all remember Game 7 in the second half when we were down I think nine in the second half and it was his eight, nine, 10 points or something like that that really got us back into Game 7 and then we won the championship. Will be forever grateful. That’s what I think of when I think of J.R.”

It sounds like yet another coy statement from Gilbert, who starts his speech with “you all remember” but can’t even recall if it was “eight, nine, 10 points or something like that” that he scored in that Game 7 — but very memorable, right?

Smith scored eight straight points to start the third quarter and finished with 12 on the night as the Cavs trailed the Golden State Warriors by seven, ultimately taking control in that third quarter and navigating a see-saw affair throughout the remainder of the game.

Dan Gilbert has no need for J.R. Smith and neither does the Cavs roster in the direction it’s headed after a 1-7 start. Perhaps saving his breath in this situation is a better use of his time, instead of insincere tales of gratefulness for a player they clearly overpaid for.

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