It's not clear if J.R. Smith has a foot fetish or if he just can’t help himself.

But with 6:50 left in the first quarter of the Knicks’ 89-85 win over Detroit on Tuesday, Smith reached for the sneaker of Greg Monroe as they lined up for a free throw, giving the impression he was trying to loosen his laces. Monroe’s reaction was to quickly shift his shoe away.

Was Smith merely enjoying a moment of levity with a peer or was he actually trying to duplicate the stunt he pulled Sunday in Dallas when he succeeded in loosening the left shoelace of Shawn Marion as they awaited a free throw late in the second quarter? According to a league source, Smith was warned by the NBA for the brazen act, luckily avoiding a fine or a suspension.

But for Smith to even hint that he was trying the same maneuver on Tuesday with NBA czar of discipline Rod Thorn in attendance speaks to either his level of playfulness or wayward behavior — depending on your view of Smith.

In a session with the media that was quickly broken up by a team official once the questions veered toward footwear and shoelaces, Smith was not given time to answer what his intentions were with Monroe. He was coy on whether he was told by the league to stop tampering with shoelaces.