Stephen A. Smith Gives JJ Redick Advice On First Take: “Stop Paying So Much Attention To The Question And Pay More Attention To The Conversations”
NBA Analyst JJ Redick has had a combative few weeks recently for ESPN, and now he's getting pointers from fellow broadcaster Stephen A. Smith
The conversation on ESPN‘s First Take has often appeared like a civil war of sorts in recent weeks, with panelists squawking at one another over a variety of social issues. One of the parties involved had been longtime NBA star JJ Redick, who has been in a lot of verbal sparring sessions recently, most notably with Kendrick Perkins.
Now one of the network’s biggest stars is seemingly tutoring Redick for his on-air reactions. On a recent broadcast of the show, host Stephen A. Smith held what appeared to be an impromptu ‘Coming to Jesus’ moment. He coached up his fellow analyst on how he responds to some questioning.
In essence, he was giving his younger colleague a live (and life) lesson – right there on the air.
In the middle of a segment discussing former Miami Heat point guard Mario Chalmers’ recent claim that “nobody fears” playing against LeBron James, commentator JJ Redick offered an odd response. The ex-Duke star seemed to frame his response in the literal sense, and it left Smith feeling a need to respond immediately.
“How we view fear… like I’m scared and cowering in a corner, that doesn’t exist,” Redick said.
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Stephen A. then made his observation about JJ Redick’s remarks.
“JJ, I’m gonna help you out here,” Smith said. “Because you’ve become more and more exceptional in the world of television, but I’m gonna help you out here because I know these kinds of subjects frustrate the living hell out of you. But I’m going to eradicate your frustration once and for all by giving you a perspective that I want you to hold onto.”
“Stop paying so much attention to the question and pay more attention to the conversations that those questions provoke, “Smith said. “Because usually, when we’re asking a question, it’s just an excuse to get into a bigger, broader picture which allows you to educate the world on your perspective of basketball which is something I think a lot of folks needs to hear. That’s how you got to look at it. Don’t get so frustrated with the questions.”
For his part, JJ Redick responded calmly, and with a bit of a smile.
“I was not frustrated today with the question,” he said. “Today I was not.”
JJ Redick is known prominently for his career as a member of the Duke Blue Devils, becoming the school’s all-time leading scorer. He holds several team records, yet none of his squads ever went on to win an NCAA Championship. He was drafted 11th overall in the 2006 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic.
Redick played for seven seasons in The Magic Kingdom, but would eventually bounce around The League, suiting up for five other franchises before retiring in 2021. He joined ESPN that same year, debuting on November 3 as a studio analyst.
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