DENVER, CO - APRIL 23: J.R. Smith #5 of the Denver Nuggets pulls up from three-point range against James Harden #13 of the Oklahoma City Thunder in Game Three of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs at Pepsi Center on April 23, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
One source close to the situation told ESPN.com that the Indiana Pacers -- who possess more salary-cap space to spend than any other team in the league at present -- and the Minnesota Timberwolves have expressed interest in Smith.
Smith has been playing in China but is expected to return to the United States this week and is ready to join an NBA roster. The Pacers would need to look past a Smith's sketchy behavioral history that has often overshadowed the dynamic game he has to offer which would give the Pacers a significant boost off the bench. The guy puts the jump in jump shot and can heat things up in a hurry.
Any risks associated with Smith don't seem to phase former teammates as both Chris Paul, Smith's teammate in New Orleans, and Carmelo Anthony, running mate in Denver, are recruiting Smith to join them with the Cilppers and Knicks, respectively.
If those recruiting efforts prove true, the Pacers will only have the advantage of being able to outbid the league for Smith's services. But as usual, every players has a palatable price so in the end the Pacers may not be willing to make a big enough offer to lure Smith away from his buds.