Chris Smith signed with the New York Knicks in August hoping to making the regular season roster out of training camp. He is the younger brother of NBA star J.R. Smith. Smith injured his knee in practice last Saturday and has been sitting out since. Now, it has been confirmed that he will need surgery on his left patella tendon and will miss three to six months.
Nate Taylor of the New York Times says Smith had been diagnosed with tendinitis while still playing for Louisville in college, but he did not know the severity of the injury even after he hurt it further on Saturday. Smith did sense the injury was bad after feeling the tweak on Saturday.
“It’s just heartbreaking, really,” Smith said. “It’s tough because everybody wants to play, nobody wants to sit out. I hadn’t missed a practice throughout my whole college career.”Smith averaged 9.7 points per game at Louisville last season. He also averaged 3.6 rebounds per game and 1.9 assists per game. He played his first two years of college ball at Manhattan University before transferring to Louisville for his final two years.
The injury will be a tough blow to Smith who was no guarantee to even make the Knicks roster out of training camp. Now, he will have to work through rehab and hope to catch on with another NBA team unless New York chooses to give him another shot.