‘It’s Asinine Stuff Like This That Drives Me Crazy’: ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith Flabbergasted by Jay Williams’ Bold Take About Miami Heat Player
ESPN’s Jay Williams on Thursday became the latest colleague to leave Stephen A. Smith stunned live on air.
While discussing the NBA Finals matchup between the Miami Heat and Denver Nuggets on First Take, Williams confidently said Heat forward Jimmy Butler is harder to defend than Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James and Phoenix Suns forward Kevin Durant. Smith immediately dropped his head in disappointment.
As is tradition before any Stephen A. Smith rant, he went out of his way to praise Williams before coming completely undone.
“I want the world to know I love Jay Williams,” Smith said. “Jay Williams is my brother. I love him to death. I even let him wear my ties. I even let him go into my office to wear my ties. He’s sitting in my seat. I love nothing but love for him, but it’s asinine stuff like this that drives me crazy because the man knows basketball. He says stuff just to rile me up. This was a shot at Stephen A. That’s what this was. He knew that he was gonna get on my nerves with that answer, and he lives to do this, ladies and gentleman.”
Smith commended Butler for his postseason success, but argued that James — the NBA’s all time leading scorer at 6-9, 250 pounds — and Durant — a 6-10 forward regarded as one of the game’s most skilled scorers ever — are simply better.
Smith then claimed Williams wouldn’t dare say that if he was still a producer for The Boardroom, the sports talk show featuring Durant. Naturally, Williams pushed back.
“I would say it to his face!” Williams said. “I don’t care. I’m gonna speak my damn mind. I learn from you every day.”
Even after the debate, Smith remained incredulous.
“I still don’t believe you believe that,” Smith said. “You can’t believe that! You’re too knowledgeable about basketball to believe that!”
Watch above via ESPN.
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