J.R. Smith has signed with the New York Knicks, he confirmed on his Twitter account on Friday morning. The former Nuggets guard, who has been playing in China all season, will likely sign for the Knicks' "room" exception of $2.5 million.
The Knicks won the Smith sweepstakes over the Los Angeles Clippers, who were hoping the prospect of a starting job and Smith's friendship with star point guard Chris Paul would push them to the top. Instead, Smith has decided to join Linsanity and the rest of the Knicks' unique mix of players.
To make room for Smith, the Knicks will release Renaldo Balkman, according to Tommy Dee of The Knicks Blog.
Smith had spent the last five seasons with the Nuggets before signing to play in the Chinese Basketball Association during the lockout. The league has a stipulation that players cannot leave their teams in the middle of the season, so Smith had to wait until his team was eliminated from playoff contention before returning to the NBA.