Mike Woodson may be teetering on the edge of unemployment, but he says the Knicks can still win the Atlantic Division.
And you know what? He’s right.
Despite their pathetic 3-13 record, the Knicks are only three games behind the Atlantic-leading Boston Celtics (8-12) in the NBA equivalent of the NFC East.
“Nobody’s running away with the division, and I still think our team can win the division,” Woodson said Wednesday amid reports that he could be fired if the Knicks lose in Brooklyn on Thursday. “We won it last year and I think we can get back to winning and win it this year.”
With reports swirling that Allan Houston or Jeff Van Gundy could replace Woodson if owner Jim Dolan opts to make a move, Woodson said he is still the man in charge.
“The thing is, it’s never been about me,” Woodson said. “I’ve said that from day one. I’ve had the opportunity to come in here and coach a team and turn a team around and right now we’ve had our ups and downs this early season.
“But am I going to throw in the towel? Absolutely not. I’m still the coach of this team. We got a big game tomorrow night which I think we can win, so we just gotta stay focused and stay the course.”
Woodson was asked about the turmoil surrounding both New York teams entering the game. Nets coach Jason Kidd reassigned Lawrence Frank on Tuesday, and Woodson could be the next to go depending on what goes down in Brooklyn.
“Sh**, I can’t worry about Jason, I gotta worry about the New York Knicks,” Woodson said. “Coaching’s not easy on anybody, at any level. He’s had his ups and downs as well as our team so it’s what it is.
“Do I feel for him ? I feel for any coach that has to go through losing strekas but, hey, you gotta get through it. You gotta keep pushing and grinding and get our team over the hump, that’s the name of the game.”
If Woodson doesn’t get the Knicks over the hump on Thursday, he may be at the end of his road in New York.
Adam Zagoria covers the New York Knicks and Big East hoops for NBA.com and SNY.tv. He also appears as a Big East Basketball Insider on SNY and 1050 ESPN Radio. You can follow him on Twitter and read his blog.