The Cleveland Cavaliers made LeBron James and the rest of “The Land” happy on Friday night, as the team reportedly agreed to bring back veteran guard J.R. Smith with a four-year deal worth $57 million.
He’s known for being one of the most polarizing figures in sports for his antics on and off the court, so the social media whirlwind that ensued surprised no one:
FOUR MORE YEARS. FOUR MORE YEARS pic.twitter.com/OemBeZstUw
— Ben Axelrod (@BenAxelrod) October 15, 2016
Joining the team in the midst of the 2014-15 season, Smith immediately found a comfort zone as the perfect floor spacer in a LeBron-centric offense.
The 13-year journeyman has fallen in and out of love with past teams he’s played for and therefore, deemed not worth the risk by most. The New York Knicks were the last team to give up on the misunderstood shooting specialist, and consequently traded him to the Cavs.
How did Smith repay them?
By serving up a platter of his best shooting season ever (knocking down over 200 three-pointers on 40 percent shooting) with a championship champagne bottle on the side to wash it down with.
James is notorious for his penetrate-and-dish mentality, so it’s no surprise that he publicly pushed management to re-sign the guy who currently holds the franchise record for most three-pointers made in a season, and a playoff game.
Not only is he appreciated by teammates and fans, he is also adored by those in the surrounding communities as seen by his recent work with local Down Syndrome patients.
— Brendan M (@BMacinCle) October 10, 2016
With his return, the reigning champs will keep their starting five in tact and will, once again, be the heavy favorites to represent the East in the NBA Finals.
You can watch Smith’s entire announcement here.