Cleveland Cavaliers shooting guard JR Smith dismissed claims by the Washington Wizards backcourt duo of John Wall and Bradley Beal that the Cavs missed out on the top seed in the Eastern Conference a year ago to avoid them in the 2017 National Basketball Association playoffs.
"I just don't understand that we tanked (to miss) them, and they went to seven games against a team that was a No. 1 seed and they lost", Smith told ESPN. I'm not going to sit here and do that.
LeBron James apparently didn't feel like dribbling all the way around Bradley Beal in the third quarter of the Cavaliers' win over the Wizards on Friday night, so instead, James jumped over Beal. Probably not, considering they couldn't beat the Celtics, who the Cavs swept easily, but hey, sometimes matchups are matchups. "I've got confidence in myself and my teammates and what we can bring to our team and what we can accomplish".
The offenses for both teams tell a different story. "That's one of the best teams to be assembled".
The Wizards will get Markieff Morris back soon and that will help with depth, allowing Oubre to return to a sixth man role (where he should thrive, he's been impressive this year as well).
For Wall, unfortunately, losing the game was not the only misery he was feeling Friday night. I believe in us, and I'm confident in us, and we're going to compete with the best of them.
Wall said the Wizards have the Cavs' respect and that they gave them "the best matchup".
According to Wall, the Cavs intentionally gave up the number one seed last season as they wanted to avoid the Wizards in the second round and didn't want to face them until the conference finals.
"Probably", Beal said. "But at the end of the day, I still stand on what I say and my teammates". "We're a targeted team now. And hopefully down the line, we'll see him again, hopefully in a seven-game series".