Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony and Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith commented Wednesday on the shooting of forward Cleanthony Early.
While speaking to reporters Wednesday afternoon, Anthony, who recently appeared in a PSA denouncing gun violence along with other NBA stars, said, “we need to do a better job of putting ourselves in a safer environment,” in regards to the shooting of his teammate. The forward also added that he believes something has to be done in regards to gun control.
Smith, who was teammates with Early on the Knicks last season, took to Twitter to express his opinions on the shooting.
So because I play basketball means I can't go outside? That's what y'all telling me? Lol people just want to hear themselves talk!— JR Smith (@TheRealJRSmith) December 30, 2015
So let me ask y'all a question! So you believe you can't go to the club an be out past 12 without it being your fault????— JR Smith (@TheRealJRSmith) December 30, 2015
Early left a strip club in Queens, N.Y. around 4:15 a.m. Wednesday morning, when he was confronted by a group of people wearing ski masks who robbed him of his personal belongings and shot him once in the right knee.
The New York Daily News reported that Early surrendered his belongings, including cash and gold chains, before being shot. The 24-year-old was taken to a local hospital following the attack and was in stable condition. A hospital spokeswoman told The Wall Street Journal that Early was released Wednesday morning.
Early was drafted by the Knicks in 2014, and has played in 10 games in his second season with the team, averaging 0.7 points and 3.4 minutes per game. He played in 39 games last season after missing two months to recover from arthroscopic surgery in his right knee.