J.R. Smith, who is now able to sign an NBA contract after his team's Chinese Basketball Association season has ended, has spoken with the L.A. Clippers' Vinny Del Negro, the coach told ESPN on Wednesday. The Clippers have long been considered a frontrunner for the gunner's services, having used Chris Paul -- a one-time teammate of Smith in New Orleans -- to help recruit the shooter.
The Orlando Magic, however, will not be among Smith's suitors. The Orlando Sentinel reports that though Smith listed the Magic as a potential destination in a coy tweet, Orlando GM Otis Smith said that the team, despite its perimeter scoring trouble, is not interested in the guard.
That really leaves the New York Knicks as the Clippers' primary competition. Despite Jeremy Lin's emergence, New York still has a dearth of long-range shooters. Smith is a career 37.1 percent three-point shooter; nearly half of his attempts have come from beyond the arc.