clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Boomer & Carton ask: Was J.R. Smith racist towards Jeremy Lin?

NBA: Preseason-Brooklyn Nets at Boston Celtics Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

We’ve heard about the discrimination Jeremy Lin has suffered being an Asian-American professional basketball player. The different stereotypes produce different head-shaking, almost comical consequences.

He’s dealt with this kind of stuff his entire life.. On Wednesday, Lin called into the Boomer and Carton show and was dished an interesting question from Carton, asking about racial issues in the Knicks locker room. Carton specifically named J.R. Smith when asking about one of the players who might be guilty.

Specifically, Carton asked Lin, "There’s the thought and I believe this, so I’ll say it’s my thought, maybe no one else’s, that there’s a racial component that because you’re a Chinese-American player, that certain African-American players in your locker room, J.R. being one of them, did not want to accept you as a ballplayer," Carton said

In response, Lin did not call Smith a racist, but he also never denied it.

"I’ve never spoken to J.R. about it," Lin told Carton  "I’ve never spoken to whoever else you might think about it. So, it’s hard for me because I don’t want to speculate. The one thing I will say is that race has been a huge part of my journey ever since I was a child trying to play basketball.

"So, I do think there was always that type of component involved but again as I’ve always said, it’s a double-edged sword. It comes with the good it comes with the bad. Yeah, sometimes I’m different… I look different and I’m treated different and that’s a negative thing, and in some ways that’s a really positive thing. Like, Linsanity wouldn’t have happened if I was white, or black, or whatever. Part of the reason why it was so crazy is because I’m Asian. I think race plays a part into it, always has, and to what degree or how much to who felt what, I can’t specifically answer."

We’ve heard so much how Lin has been treated unfairly throughout his life because of his Asian heritage. He didn’t call anybody out by any means. The question was asked and he answered honest, as he always does.

As for J.R. Smith, he quickly disagreed with Carton and the idea of racism towards Jeremy Lin during his days with the Knicks:

Smith's remark about "other players knocked him down" once again raised the issue of how there was indeed dissent on the Knicks regarding Linsanity.  In the past year, both Amare Stoudemire and coach Mike D'Antoni have suggested that Carmelo Anthony may very well have been jealous of all the attention Lin received.

Before Carton dropped that bomb, Lin spoke about the Nets new culture...

"This is the most detailed and structured plan I've ever seen and I've been a part of six organizations in seven years," Lin said. "This one, in terms of the level of structure, the level of detail is next level.  How much they care for their players, how much they do for their players all of that. 

"Once you get into this system, it's hard to be late, it's hard to be lazy because everything is built in so you see everyone else doing it that way.  You see everyone, the staff, the trainers, everyone working hard too."