Anthony Cotton and Benjamin Hochman of the Denver Post wrote:
J.R. Smith, a restricted free agent whom the Nuggets plan to re-sign, has been added to the U.S. select team, which will scrimmage against the U.S. Olympic team this week in Las Vegas.
Smith arrived in Las Vegas today and should be suited up Thursday. Other members of this team include Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant, Memphis' O.J. Mayo and Atlanta's Al Horford.
"I'm happy; it's a blessing," Smith said if his addition to the select squad. "Hopefully, one day I'll be able to play on the Olympic team."
At about this time a year ago, Smith may have been at the nadir of his professional career. The guard was effectively kicked off the team for the latter stages of the Nuggets' opening-round loss to San Antonio in the 2007 playoffs. Later that summer, he was involved in a car accident in which one of his friends was killed.
But Smith rallied on the court last year, averaging 12.3 points per game during the regular season and 18.3 versus the Lakers in the playoffs. He is a restricted free agent and the Nuggets have made a qualifying offer to him, ensuring their stance that they want Smith back.
"The work is definitely paying off," Smith said. "Even after the car accident it's just a blessing to be here today. It's not the Olympic team, but it's still a shot and it shows that people are looking at me with respect."