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LeBron James on Dennis Smith Jr.: “He should be a Knick”

Dallas Mavericks v Memphis Grizzlies

MEMPHIS, TN - OCTOBER 26: Dennis Smith Jr. #1 of the Dallas Mavericks on the court during a game against the Memphis Grizzlies at the FedEx Forum on October 26, 2017 in Memphis, Tennessee. 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. The Grizzlies defeated the Mavericks 96-91. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

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LeBron James has taken another shot at Phil Jackson.

When Jackson was still at the helm of the Knicks last June, they drafted Frank Ntilikina No. 8, one spot in front of Dennis Smith Jr., who fell to Dallas.

Since then Smith has looked like far better pick — Smith is averaging 14.2 points per game to Ntilikina’s 4.7, Smith has the ball in his hands and has been the more efficient shooter (although neither is efficient), and Smith has looked like a potential future star while Ntilikina has looked like a project.

After his Cavaliers beat the Mavericks, LeBron fired a shot at Jackson talking about Smith, via the Dallas Morning News’ Brad Townsend.

“The Knicks passed on a really good on. Dallas got the diamond in the rough. He should be a Knick. That’s going to make some headlines, but he should be a Knick. ... He’s an unbelievable talent. Athleticism. He’s very poised to be his age. Can shoot the ball, can penetrate. He’s only going to get better and better with the opportunities that he’s given here to play. Dallas got a good one.”

There were plenty of scouts and others who thought Smith fell too far down the board draft night, but Jackson and others were high on the potential of Ntilikina. That said, he was always a project, a gut that was more about five years from now than this season.

LeBron is right. That doesn’t mean he wasn’t savoring a shot at Jackson.