Hoping all goes well for one of my favorite Hornets ever. The team is really going to miss his leadership and hustle.
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Jason Smith Will Miss the Rest of the Season
Hornets forward Jason Smith will miss the remainder of the season with a torn labrum in his left shoulder. His surgery is scheduled for next week and the team will release more details regarding the injury at that time.
Smith suffered the injury attempting to block a Kevin Durant slam dunk back on December 12th, and when we last spoke he was planning to play through the pain and have surgery this off-season. There’s no word on what, if anything, has physically changed since then. It’s entirely possible (I’d go with probable) that the team and his doctors have reevaluated the situation and decided that it’s best to have him 100 percent ready and in shape for next season, especially when there’s really nothing to gain by finishing out this year.
Still, it’s a sad day for Hornets fans.
Smith was having arguably his best year yet in the pros, scoring 19.2 points and grabbing 8.8 rebounds per 40 minutes of play. His 16.84 PER is the highest of his career.
What we’ll miss most though is the intensity and energy that he brings to the Arena. I’ve always considered him to be a much more talented Ryan Bowen. His energy is contagious, and nobody goes harder after a loose ball. The hit he laid on Blake Griffin will go down in history, as will the win over the Clippers that followed shortly after. It’s no wonder that he’s a fan favorite, as well as the longest tenured Hornets player.
On the bright side he’ll back back next season at a steal– 2.5 million.
Let’s all hope his recovery goes well and that he returns ready to be the heart and soul of the first of many Pelicans playoff teams.