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NBA Rumors: As J.R. Smith's Status with Cavs Hangs, Boston Celtics Reportedly Targeting NBA Champ

( [email protected] ) Jul 25, 2016 12:16 PM EDT
Despite helping the team win the 2016 NBA Finals, J.R. Smith's status with the Cleveland Cavaliers still remains uncertain since he is still a free agent. Because of this, there's a strong chance that the shooting guard might entertain offers from other teams, such as the Boston Celtics.
Oakland, CA, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith (5) with the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy after beating the Golden State Warriors in game seven of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Despite helping the team win the 2016 NBA Finals, J.R. Smith's status with the Cleveland Cavaliers still remains uncertain since he is still a free agent. Because of this, there's a strong chance that the shooting guard might entertain offers from other teams, such as the Boston Celtics.

According to previous reports, Smith's future with the Cavs will depend on LeBron James, who had already stated that he will re-sign with the team. However, since James has not yet signed a contract, it is not yet clear how much the Cavs will be able to offer Smith.

If James goes for a multi-year deal with a higher payout, this could endanger Smith's spot on the team, since he is reportedly asking for about $15 million per season. For a player like Smith, that figure is a bit high. Also, the Cavs might not have enough cap space to cover his salary since aside from James, they also still have to sign head coach Tyronn Lue.

But, if Smith is really determined on getting $15 million a year, then there's a strong possibility that he might entertain offers from other teams, such as the Celtics, just to motivate the Cavs to give him what he wants.

"The question is whether Smith can find a suitor to force the Cavaliers to pay him what he wants," Kevin Pelton of ESPN said. "He doesn't really make a lot of sense for any of the teams with significant cap space remaining, though if the Boston Celtics renounce the rights to Tyler Zeller they could offer Smith a one-year deal worth nearly $12 million to supply shooting they need."

If this happens, it wouldn't come as a surprise since the Celtics have a lot of cap space. Also, coach Brad Stevens of Boston had previously said that the team's top priority is to get shooters. Sure, Smith only averaged 12.4 points per game last season but he was at 40 percent at the three-point line.

But then again, based on recent rumors, Smith's status will depend on the figures. If the Cavs are not able to supply what he wants, then Smith might actually consider signing with another team that could provide that.

Tags : NBA, J.R. Smith, Cleveland Cavaliers, Sports