LeBron James confirmed that his comment about the Knicks passing on the Mavericks’ Dennis Smith Jr. Saturday night was a shot at former Knicks president Phil Jackson.

But James said his belief in the potential of Smith, the point guard who was ninth overall pick out of N.C. State, is the same as how he feels about the Browns passing on now-injured Texans rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson. The Browns could have selected Watson first or 12th overall in April.

“It’s the same if I, I mean, I think Deshaun Watson should be a Brown,” James said Monday morning before the Cavs’ shootaround at Madison Square Garden. “Doesn’t mean that Myles Garrett isn’t going to be a great football player. But Deshaun Watson should’ve been our quarterback. Doesn’t mean you’re sh---ing on the next guy. It’s just that you stating what you see. That’s all that is, for clarification of people who just live in the box, and for Enes Kanter, who always got something to say. He says … I don’t know what’s wrong with him.”

Instead of Smith, 19, the Knicks selected guard Frank Ntilikina of France. James said his close friend from St. Vincent-St. Mary, Romeo Travis, played with Ntilikina in Europe.

The Belgian-born Ntilikina is averaging 4.4 points, 1.9 rebounds and five assists in 10 games, as compared to Smith’s 14.8 points, 3.8 rebounds and 4.9 assists in 12 games for the Mavs.

James said Saturday of Smith, “He should be a Knick.” Asked to explain what prompted him to say that about Smith, James said, “I just think that his athleticism, his playmaking ability, I’ve been knowing the kid since he was 14 years old. So I know what he was capable of. And I wasn’t throwing shade at Frank at all, for people that got their pants in a bunch, things of that nature in New York, look for any controversy here.

“I was basically stating what I saw in Dennis Smith and what I saw from him coming out, and watching the draft. I thought that he would be a great fit here with (Kristaps) Porzingis. That’s not to say that Frank won’t be a great fit. I haven’t seen much of him. I knew about him from my best friend (Romeo Travis) who I went to high school with, who actually played with him overseas the last couple years.”

As for Jackson, who was fired by the Knicks six days after the draft, James said, “Oh yeah, it’s definitely a shot at him. That’s for sure.”

While the Knicks weren’t the only team that could have drafted Smith, James said he thought Smith was headed there when watching the draft.

“I talked about it with people that know the game enough. I know what Dennis Smith is capable of doing. And I knew the Knicks had been looking for a point guard,” James said. “Am I stating things that’s false? No. This is facts, right? I thought they would pick him, but, like I said there was no shade at Frank. I don’t even know the kid.

“I wasn’t even thinking about the kid when I was talking about Dennis Smith. I was thinking about the Knicks organization, and Phil Jackson at the time, and Dennis Smith’s talent, and Porzingis. That’s all I was thinking about.”

Knicks center Enes Kanter tweeted about James’ comment Saturday, saying, “Nope!! We love what we got... Thanks!!!”

Kanter said more about what he perceived was disrespect of Ntilikina after practice Sunday.

“I don't care who, I just cannot let anyone disrespect my family like that, because when I play for an organization, I see my teammates and that organization as like a family," Kanter told reporters in New York Sunday, per ESPN.com. "And it doesn't matter if it's LeBron or whoever it is, I cannot just let him disrespect him like that. The coaches, the GMs, the president, this organization knows what they're doing. ... I mean, come on. That's a rookie. You cannot just say anything like that about him.”

James said he’s not disappointed in the Knicks organization, although he clearly still resents Jackson’s “posse” comment in 2016 about his business partners. James close friend Carmelo Anthony played for the Knicks until he was traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder in September.

“Phil was just a small piece, well he was a big piece of it, actually. I don’t have no problem with the Knicks organization. I wasn’t here so I don’t know the insights and everything,” James said. “I’m a fan of the game as well. It’s great when the Knicks, the Celtics and the Lakers are great in our league all at the same time. It’s best for our league.

“But I don’t have no wrongdoing for the Knicks organization. Y’all know how they handled the Carmelo situation, but I’m not a fan of Phil Jackson, though. I think you guys already know that. Let’s not, that’s the past though. He’s not even here anymore.”

James didn’t seem worried about the reception he will receive from Knicks fans at the Garden Monday night.

“Man, I don’t care. What’s going to be worse here than I’ve felt before in my career? I’m just stating facts, that’s all. Have y’all seen (Smith) play? Man, get out of here. Y’all be tripping here.”