On Thursday morning, Cleveland Cavaliers fans were surprised to learn that shooting guard J.R. Smith is hoping for a trade, and it now seems as though he could face a fine from the NBA for the admission.
The news was revealed when Smith openly admitted his hopes of being traded when asked by a reporter. Now, according to one NBA insider, the NBA will examine whether or not Smith’s statements should earn him a fine from the league.
JR Smith was asked: “Are you hoping for a trade?” He responded, “Yeah.” The NBA will examine if that constitutes a public trade request, which exposes him to a fine under the CBA. Eric Bledsoe was popped $10K for the “I don’t wanna be here,” tweet in Phoenix.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 1, 2018
A potential fine from the league is an interesting wrinkle to the incredibly unexpected trade request. While Smith has found himself on the outside looking in the Cavs’ rotation, it is unclear what kind of trade, if any, would be offered for the 15-year veteran.
Smith’s request to be traded is the latest sign that the Cavs are in the midst of a massive overhaul. Other signs of that fact include the news that veteran guard Kyle Korver is reportedly on the trading block, and of course the firing of Cavs head coach Tyronn Lue.
What remains to be seen is how the younger players on this roster respond now that it seems like much of the veteran presence may soon be on the move.