GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Mike Woodson would like to see enigmatic sixth man J.R. Smith improve his shot selection this season.
"When you're a scorer in this league, you've got to learn when you can turn it on and turn it off and I think those are the adjustments that he's going to have to make," the New York Knicks' coach said Friday.
Smith is known for having a quick trigger on offense. His numbers from last season show that he was at his best when attacking the rim.
During the Knicks' 13-game winning streak late in the regular season, Smith scored 23.2 points per game on 49 percent shooting. Smith doubled the percentage of shots he took in the restricted area during the streak (15.6 percent beforehand; 33 percent during).
Woodson didn't say so explicitly, but he'd probably like to see Smith take it the basket with more consistency this season. Last year, 35 percent of Smith's shots were mid-range jumpers. He made 42 percent of those attempts.
Smith also struggled in the postseason, making just 33 percent of his shots.
"I think J.R. did a great job in scoring the ball last year. It's really the first time he's been in that mode of when he came off the bench. We catered to his needs and I thought he responded," Woodson said.
Smith is rehabbing from offseason knee surgery. Once he's deemed healthy, he will serve a five-game suspension for violating the NBA's anti-drug policy.
UP NOW: Tyson Chandler vows never to get his "ass kicked" by Roy Hibbert again. Hibbert, if you remember, had a strong series against Chandler and the Knicks in the playoffs last year. Larry Johnson sees guard Iman Shumpert as the future of the Knicks. Woodson wants to see the Knicks get back into the top 10 in team defense this season. And the Knicks scrimmaged, but Chandler, Shumpert and Kenyon Martin sat out. Also, Metta World Peace says Carmelo Anthony has a "killer instinct."
WHAT'S NEXT: The Knicks will practice again on Saturday. They are preparing for their first preseason game, Wednesday against the Celtics.
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