Cleveland Cavaliers’ guard J.R. Smith is an avid golfer. In fact, golf has been a big reason why Smith has turned his game around in the NBA Playoffs.
Smith averaged 8.6 points per game during the regular season, but so far in the playoffs he is averaging10.6 points per game to go along with a 38.6-percent 3-point percentage. In the first two second-round games against Toronto, Smith has scored 20 and 15 points, respectively.
For Smith, it’s not a coincidence.
“The weather starts getting nice, the grass starts growing,” Smith said Friday. “I get to play golf, I get to take my mind off basketball for a second and just remember why I’m here. Just to have fun and take it back to when I was a little kid just dying to be in this position.”
Smith said he’s played about four rounds since the weather has warmed up, and then joked that he was going to get in 27 holes Friday after the team’s film session.
He was also asked if he had received any advice that has helped him turn his game around. Smith responded with another golf-related answer.
“Justin Thomas told me to hit ’em straight when I’m out there,” Smith said.