NEW YORK – New York Knicks guard J.R. Smith was suspended without pay for five regular-season games by the NBA on Friday for violating the anti-drug program.
Smith, coming off offseason surgery on his left knee, will sit out the first five games for which he is eligible and physically able to play. Smith had patella tendon surgery and arthroscopy that will keep him from joining the Knicks when they open training camp late this month.
Smith won the Sixth Man of the Year award last season and helped shoot the Knicks into the playoffs before struggling in the postseason. He averaged 18.1 points during the regular season.