Knicks’ J.R. Smith plays through illness

As yesterday’s Game 3 approached, there was talk that the New York Knicks could be without sixth man J.R. Smith due to illness. Smith was able to play through his sickness, but he was once again mostly ineffective in the Knicks’ 82-71 loss to the Indiana Pacers.

Smith’s cold shooting streak continued, as the guard went 4-of-12 from the field – including 0-of-3 from three-point range. In 25 minutes, Smith finished with nine points and one rebound.
It was more production that some expected from Smith as tipoff approached. Earlier in the day, coach Mike Woodson told reporters – including Ian Begley of ESPN New York – that Smith was dealing with a 102-degree fever.

Instead of participating in shootaround with the rest of the Knicks, Smith remained in the team’s hotel and received fluids from the medical staff. His status was in question until Woodson said in his pregame conference that Smith’s fever had subsided and he would play.

Fever or no fever, Smith has struggled to make shots since early in the playoffs. In order to overcome a 2-1 deficit, New York will need the guard to get hot.

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