Stephen A. Smith CREDIT: ESPN

Stephen A. Smith needs a vacation.

Thursday night on ESPN’s NBA Countdown before the start of Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals between the Indiana Pacers and Boston Celtics, he went as far as to say that exact thing.

“You’ve been my partner for years at this network, and you’ve never heard me say what I’m about to say,” Smith said to fellow Countdown panelist Michael Wilbon before continuing, “I ain’t rooting for no damn long series. I need some time off.”

Smith made sure to reaffirm his position as the other panelists groaned, “It’s gonna be a long series, but I ain’t rooting for it.”

Would Smith be saying this had his New York Knicks advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals? Very unlikely. He’s been on the defense for much of the week, including Wednesday when Chris Russo called him out for openly rooting for the Knicks and hugging Spike Lee before last Sunday’s Game 7 between the Knicks and Pacers. Smith responded by telling Russo to ‘kick rocks.’

Regardless of how much Smith personally cares about the teams in the series, it’s a poor look for one of the faces of ESPN’s NBA coverage actively rooting against the sport. Fans deserve better than the apathy Smith has put on display here, and the NBA likely isn’t a fan of hearing this kind of talk from one of it’s media partners.

[Photo Credit: ESPN]