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Josh Smith on disappointing season: 'It's not all my fault'

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Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

From Vinnie Goodwill at the Detroit News:

"I am an easy target to be able to blame. I’m very outspoken," Smith said. "I’m an emotional player. I can easily be a target night in and out."

With the exception of the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season, Smith is taking the most shots per game of his career, shooting the lowest percentage of his career (41.8) and taking the most 3-point attempts (3.4 per game).

[...] "If you played the game, if you know X’s and O’s, it’s not all my fault," Smith said. "I’m not gonna say I’m perfect, by far, but I’m not the guy you can point the finger at. I’m a firm believer in you point one finger at one person, point three back at yourself."

So who is the problem, Josh?

"There’s a lot of young guys that don’t understand the importance of understanding your opponent, it’s still fun for them," Smith said. "What we have to understand is, it’s cool to have fun but look at the severity of the situation. Playing in the postseason is addictive. Being there six times, all you look forward to is that feeling, a feeling like no other."

Gotcha, cool.

I'm being unfair, of course -- read the entire article to see the quotes in their proper context -- but it's a little funny that Smith thinks that it's the fact he's outspoken and emotional that puts a target on his back and not the fact that he's shooting 25.6 percent front 3-point range yet averages the second-most attempts of his career. Smith adds:

"My question to everybody is, after the season, did we get better through the year we played?" Smith asked. "It’s all about progress and keep taking the step up and not taking steps back. We’ve done a good job but it’s not good enough for me. I know how talented this basketball team is."

As a player, yes, Smith showed some improvement as the year went on (so long as you ignore the train wreck that was March, or that his 3-point and free-throw percentages make you want to slam your hand in a door):

Month G FG% 3P% FT% TS% MP PTS TRB AST
October 1 0.667 0.429 0.792 39.7 19.0 5.0 5.0
November 15 0.381 0.254 0.517 0.442 35.4 13.4 7.5 3.3
December 17 0.404 0.232 0.661 0.453 34.3 16.4 5.8 3.2
January 12 0.449 0.167 0.556 0.484 35.7 17.2 7.3 3.3
February 13 0.453 0.229 0.481 0.477 38.6 18.9 8.2 4.6
March 16 0.395 0.291 0.459 0.433 34.5 16.4 6.3 2.4
April 1 0.450 0.750 0.429 0.520 37.3 24.0 5.0 1.0

But as a team? Nope, the Pistons didn't get better whatsoever:

Month G W L Win %
Oct/Nov 16 6 10 0.375
December 17 8 9 0.470
January 12 4 8 0.333
February 13 5 8 0.385
March 16 4 12 0.250
April 1 1 0.000

Now your thoughts. Who deserves the blame?