Woodson’s seat warming up?

After the most demoralizing loss of the season, it is time to once again ask the question: Is Mike Woodson long for this team?

A report in The Record suggests Woodson could be gone by the February 20th trade deadline and lays out just how bad the loss in Milwaukee was:

Monday’s 101-98 loss was a particularly brutal one, a lifeless effort against a team that had lost 15 of 16 games, was playing without two of its best players, lost two others to fouls and injury in the fourth quarter, and still held on.

Ben Kopelman

Show me a more pathetic loss in the entire league this season and I’ll back away from the ledge.

As I wrote a couple months ago, the question is not whether the team’s record is a reflection of it’s coach. Rather, it is whether Woodson has wielded his power to the best of his abilities. Aside from the obvious blemish that is the Knicks’ record, one has to ask whether Woodson still has the respect of his team, the ability to lead them.

Over the last few weeks, the needle is slowly but surely leaning toward NO. Look no further than Tyson Chandler and Amar’e Stoudemire, two of the more upbeat and professional guys on the team, publicly questioning Woodson’s decisions. A players’ coach who has a laundry list of disgruntled players? Never an encouraging combination.

Is Woodson to blame for the Knicks’ 10th place standing? Not entirely, no, of course not. If J.R. Smith had made one of his first 13,458 shots to open the season, the team tallies a few extra W’s and Woodson has more wiggle room. If Tyson doesn’t go down early on and miss so many games the team does not go on an extended losing streak and the uneven play doesn’t look as bad.

But those are the bumps along every season’s road. Every coach is forced to reshuffle the deck and work with what he has, no matter what he may have assumed he would have. If you planned to be up by 15 at halftime against, say, the worst team in the NBA, but instead find yourself down seven, you go into the locker room and change things up: your rotations, defensive scheming, offensive play calling, something. You don’t just presume that a pep talk and some menacing looks will do the trick.

Woodson knows basketball, I am not questioning that, but the strategy employed on the court sure looks like the stuff the team was running back in November. The team was losing then, if I recall correctly. Guess what — they’re still losing now.

In games and during the season as a whole, Woodson has failed to adjust, failed to think on his feet and failed to come through when the team has needed him most. If he was a player we’d be calling for him to get benched or traded. For a coach, the options are binary: either he stays, or he goes.

His fate is not set in stone, and a winning streak is always a solid cure, but in freezing cold New York, Woodson has the hottest seat in town.


You can follow Ben on Twitter @bkop2000

165 comments
Frank Gebel
Frank Gebel

Tired of guys not being up for games not knowing what time is left on shot clock,could run the worst plays coming out of a time out,never has the team mentally ready,benches guys who play hard in favor of his favorites(Felton a disaster). Always gets outcoached.Bench Raymond and play Udroh ,hes not great but cant be worse than Felton.

Brostoevsky
Brostoevsky

Accidentally double-posted. Fricking livefyre

Brostoevsky
Brostoevsky

Honestly nothing surprises me with this once-proud franchise anymore. Dolan/Mills failure to fire Woodson has long since passed the point of ridiculousness such that maybe not even an embarrassing loss to the worst team in the nba MISSING TWO STARTERS (an overlooked byline) qualifies as a fireable offense. ‎

Will a change at the top get us in/through the playoffs? No. But it's time to move on. Period.

Having lived as an every-night season ticket holder through the Marbury 'decade' (I know he wasn't there whole time but that's how it began), I saw what a losing culture can do to younger players or guys who have tools but need to develop. Losing is one thing, but the following are unforgiveable:‎

1) not being prepared mentally, physically or tactically

2) not leaving it all on the floor and putting in 100% effort

3) burying guys that are playing to win (even if they lack talent) on the bench

You can point to almost any game this year and level all three accusations. How can that happen?

Losing cultures are infectious and they are insidious. Shumpert and THJR may never be stars and they may never even be key contributors, but I guarantee one thing - the odds of either reaching either level is zero if this doesn't change‎

TradeCarmelo
TradeCarmelo

Clean House ! Fire sale on Melo and the rest of these humps including simpsons character mike woodson!

Ruben
Ruben

Yeah, I'm about to go there.....

Maybe the reason the Nets hired him is because they knew what we all now know, the real head coach last year in that 54-28 Knicks team was J.Kidd :0

JETS_
JETS_

Mike "shouldacoulda" woodson 



FIRE THIS MAGGOT ALREADY

KnickelusKnickleby
KnickelusKnickleby

That Bucks loss had me away for 48hrs , i had to delete that out of my memory banks 

kneggyknik
kneggyknik

Felton goes off for 8 points and 2 assists tonight!!  Gets revenge against the team that benched him.

Jesse Brand
Jesse Brand

Will someone please post the hollins talking about the Knicks please

dagawd
dagawd

These sports guys got it wrong


He's not going to get fired by the deadline


Dolan is giving him a 3 year extension

Seth Nadler
Seth Nadler

If firing Woody keeps Melo then he might as well go now, if Melo doesn't care Woody should go, if Melo leaves then have Woody finish the season

OLDKNICK
OLDKNICK

KNICK MAY NEED TOO MANY THINGS TO MAKE IT LOOK GOOD FOR CARMELO TO STAY...

How many needs do they have???


1 point guard ahhh forget it the list is too long

tifoso6
tifoso6

From the beginning of the season I said a weak point guard and a weak coach make for a weak team.  But the  interesting question is why is Woodson a weak coach.  He knows basketball.  My friend who has seasons tickets and played point guard in college, made this comment.   Woodson is too insecure to be a good coach. He does not have confidence in his own judgment so he does things that he thinks will protect his job, such as playing Felton and JR Smith, thinking that is what Dolan wants.  He does not have the guts to say Felton cannot defend therefore I will play Murray and let him develop.  Also because he is not confident

he rips into the young guys and does not control the stars because he is afraid of them.  34 games to bench

Smith was about 30 games too late.  A bad, bad coach not because he is a mean person but simply because he is not up to the job.

Seth Nadler
Seth Nadler

I always want the knicks to win, but if losing tonight get's woody fired, then I'm ok with them losing

Chris
Chris

Irving  and Deng for Chandler and Shump, they both want out of that zoo. Deng can play 2 thru 4 and defend. 

chudogz
chudogz

It was still D Antoni's offense, my friend.... That should be clear by now

illmatix
illmatix

@Jerry Gee  the problem is that they are profitable regardless of their record

rico
rico

@Seth Nadler  Irony is,  that 2 years ago it was all about "Firing MDAntoni and Hiring Woody to please Melo" 

rgm891
rgm891

@OLDKNICK  I got 99 problems and they're all Jim Dolan- TKB

Chris
Chris

@tifoso6  Didn`t say he is evil, said he can`t do the job. Although what he does to young players is abusive, so don`t give him too many nicees

illmatix
illmatix

@Seth Nadler  we've been down this road for what seems to be like months now....if he didn't get fired when the season mattered why would they fire him now

rico
rico

@Chris  make that Irving and Varejo sweeten the deal from our side and you got something

saintknick
saintknick

@Chris  Durant and Westbrook for Stat and Herb Williams. Williams can be an assistant 1 thru 5...


Also, I am fairly certain Kate Upton is going to show up and declare her undying physical need for me...

Chris
Chris

@rico  Turns out that was not a correct statement. My spin is hawthorne effect when Dum Phony got the hook, Kidd and Sheed ran things last year. Kidd knew he was getting the Nyets job and let Woody fry in the playoffs, and here is the real Woody

Chris
Chris

@rgm891  Like the German group that did 99 balloons  

OLDKNICK
OLDKNICK

@rgm891 We in the same boat... I kinda remember when I first started typing on TKB waaaay back, I was always blasting dolan and the regulars would give me some grief and thought I blamed him for too much. Funny thing is this was all before NO"D"ANTINI even got here and it was simply the Isiah and Jimmy show! I even remember when they did that interview together on MSG. Wow.... memories...

rgm891
rgm891

@illmatix  Dolan stated that the only way he would fire him if he loses the player's respect.  Amar'e threw him under the bus and Melo/Chandler countless number of times. You're right though.  I don't know whatelse that needs to be done.  

Chris
Chris

@rico @Chris  You like Anderson better then Deng? I`m a Deng fan, we get Thibs, they love each other we be good to go, might even win that bet for Biggie

Chris
Chris

@Seth Nadler @Chris  Why not they both want out, Deng went national on what a clown show Cleveland is, he is not resigning and neither is Kyle so why not, but I like Harden and Westbrook deal if and only if they throw in Woody

SheSaidSpikeWho
SheSaidSpikeWho

@Chris @rico  


He was always this bad. The switching, the bad substitutions, the lack of adjustments, the lack of play-calling, the lack of a dynamic offense has always been there. Kidd kept the team in check on the court. The older guys (Sheed, KT, Camby) kept them in check off the court. We hit a record setting amount of 3's and had guys who could consistently hit a three. The problems were always there but we won so they were overlooked. Now that we're losing, the problems are more noticeable. 

Chris
Chris

@rico @Chris  Just seem to make sense. A coach doesn`t become this bad this quickly, he must have always been this bad, so it makes sense to me that there are logical reasons

rico
rico

@Chris @rico  That's a hell of a theory. Though I think Kidd was the coach on the court and Sheed the lockeroom leader, and was laughed at when I wrote that how much they would be missed.  Hoped Melo / Chandler would step up in that dept but no go

rgm891
rgm891

@OLDKNICK @rgm891  Crazy how times flies man. That's insane. Keep up the great work Old Knick.  Only u and some others know the true feeling of how it feels for the Knicks to win it all. Man I will keep dreaming

illmatix
illmatix

@rgm891 @illmatix  i would love to fight the good fight this season but you have to know when to raise the white flag, regroup and get your ish together

rgm891
rgm891

@illmatix @rgm891  Valid point man. This is the truth.  But maybe adding another big time player at the deadline will make Melo make his decision quicker. That should be the goal by this deadline in my opinion but who knows what Jim does

illmatix
illmatix

@rgm891 @illmatix  might be the best way to go but with the Melo situation it kind of handcuffs them until he makes his decision

rgm891
rgm891

@illmatix  That's what most likely is going to happen. I think we should trade trading some players away at the deadline and start this rebuilding process.

illmatix
illmatix

@rgm891 @illmatix  i am sorry to say, the Knicks are not making any positive noise this year...the FO needs to let this ish ride and work on fixing it over the summer