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Tuesday, March 4, 2014
J.R. Smith's brother released

By Ian Begley

Chris Smith, the younger brother of New York Knicks guard J.R. Smith, has been released by the Erie BayHawks, the Knicks' D-League affiliate.

The BayHawks announced the roster move Tuesday afternoon.

Chris Smith
Chris Smith, brother of New York's J.R. Smith, was released by the Knicks' D-League affiliate Tuesday.

League sources told on Tuesday that the younger Smith had several run-ins with the BayHawks' coaching staff, which contributed to the team's decision to release him.

Smith began the season on the Knicks' roster. His inclusion on the 15-man roster stirred strong emotion from the team's fan base because of his ties to his brother. Both the Knicks and Chris Smith have acknowledged that Smith's older brother was a factor in the team's decision to keep him.

The 26-year-old's inclusion on the roster also spurred a negative reaction from at least one NBA player.

Detroit's Brandon Jennings engaged in a Twitter spat with J.R. Smith after questioning Chris Smith's credentials. J.R. Smith was fined $25,000 for directing hostile and inappropriate language toward Jennings in a response tweet.

Some rival agents believe Chris Smith's roster spot with the Knicks was locked in as a package deal when J.R. Smith re-signed with the team in July, though the league never investigated the matter.

In 23 games with the BayHawks, Smith averaged 8.1 points and 3.3 rebounds.