Smith was present for Cleveland's shootaround earlier Thursday, meaning the incident apparently occurred after then.
The Cavs announced veteran guard Smith's one-game ban two hours before Thursday's National Basketball Association clash for conduct detrimental to the team.
BC-BKN-Cavaliers-Smith Suspended, 1st Ld-Writethru, 172Cavs suspend guard J.R Smith 1 game for detrimental conductAP Photo NY901Eds: Updates with quotes, details.
But Smith hasn't been himself this season. Wade has since been traded back to Miami, where he played much of his legendary career.
An emotional player and person, Smith was clearly bothered by the arrival before the season of Dwyane Wade, who briefly took his starting spot. He's always been a streaky shooter, but his shot isn't falling as often. In 2014, he joined the coaching staff and started working with the National Basketball Association G League team, the Canton Charge.
Smith attended Thursday's morning shootaround, but the team did not announce his suspension until two hours before tip-off. Rodney Hood started against the Sixers in place of Smith, who has played a key role in the Cavs making the NBA Finals the past three seasons.