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The Early Lead
Posted at 03:00 PM ET, 02/17/2012

J.R. Smith will join Knicks’ Linsanity; Carmelo Anthony doubtful

Updated at 3 p.m.

J.R. Smith, a swingman who has been playing in China, has decided to join the New York Knicks and Linsanity.

He’ll step into a lineup that includes his former Denver Nuggets teammate Carmelo Anthony as well as Jeremy Lin, the undrafted phenom who has energized the Knicks, winners of seven games in a row.

The pieces aren’t immediately in place, though. Anthony, sidelined the last six games by a groin injury, is expected to play this weekend, but, according to Coach Mike D’Antoni, is doubtful for tonight’s game against the New Orleans Hornets. In his absence, Lin took over the team, the internet and the universe, raising questions about how Anthony will fit in. The lineup ay be revealed Sunday — on national TV — when the Knicks host the Dallas Mavericks at 1 p.m.

Smith tweeted today that the Knicks had beaten out the Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers in the battle for his services. How was he available? Well, he signed to play in China when the lockout began in July and, when it ended in December, international rules prevented him from leaving without having a team buy out his contract. That did not happen and, when the Chinese season ended this week, he became available.

Linsanity

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By  |  03:00 PM ET, 02/17/2012

 
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