Lakers add veteran J.R. Smith for Orlando championship push

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FILE – In this Oct. 8, 2018, file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith dribbles to the basket during the first quarter of a preseason NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pacers in Cleveland. J.R. Smith has joined LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers for their championship push. The Lakers announced their long-anticipated signing of Smith as a substitute player on Wednesday, July 1, 2020, the first day allowed under the rules of the NBA’s summer restart. (AP Photo/Scott R. Galvin, File)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — J.R. Smith has joined LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers for their championship push.

The Lakers announced their long-anticipated signing of Smith as a substitute player. Smith is the Lakers’ replacement for Avery Bradley, who cited family reasons for his decision not to finish the season with the Lakers in Orlando.

The 34-year-old Smith hasn’t played in the league since November 2018, but the 2013 Sixth Man of the Year is a longtime trusted teammate of James.

They won the NBA title together with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016 and reached four consecutive NBA Finals.

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