It is hard to defense, the indefensible.
With the New York Knicks needing a win Monday night, the total collapse of this veteran team is hard to explain.
With Jason Kidd now gone and not able to control games end, Mike Woodson clearly is struggling. Kidd hid many of Woodson’s weaknesses and now he is exposed. Woodson is a great guy, the players, press etc., love him. He is honest and approachable. He is a nice guy. However in the NBA, nice guys rarely finish first.
The first mistake Woodson made was having Beno Udrih in the game.
Woodson refuses to think outside the box, as Toure Murry is 6’5″ and a superior defender. The Knicks allowed Bradley Beal to shoot at will. If something ain’t working, fix it. Murry should have seen some time in the second half, especially knowing Pablo Prigioni broke his toe and was out for the game. Udrih who has not played extended minutes this season was clearly tired at games end.
I admire coach Woodson for stepping up and taking the blame, however this appears to happen too often for a veteran coach.
“I probably should have taken for sure the timeout there at the end,” Woodson said, via Pollakoff. “Beno grabbed it and the ball was in Melo’s hands before I could even react, and I should have reacted a lot sooner once the ball went through the bucket.”
This wasn’t simply a plan gone awry. As ESPN New York’s Ian O’Connor wrote, there wasn’t even a plan in place: “In that previous huddle, Woodson never told his players to call timeout in the event of a Washington score, a fact Anthony confirmed.”
It appears even Anthony is losing faith in Woodson, when he literally did not stand behind his coach. When this happens, you know what happens next. If not call Mike D’Antoni.
“If [Woodson] said it’s his fault, then it’s his fault,” Anthony said, via Adam Zagoria. “If he said it was his fault and he takes the blame, then he takes the blame.”
Well it was his fault.
Udrih an NBA veteran, should not have been on Beal. He was the hot hand, Iman Shumpert should have covered him. J.R. Smith, could have handled the point and Metta World Peace should have been on the floor. Udrih played a decent game, but was clearly outplayed at games end.
Even if Woodson wanted him on the floor, it should have been to foul Beal. Then, Washington would have to reset their offense, while taking the ball out of bounds.
1. Udrih on the floor
2. Udrih not fouling Beal
3. No help defense- if you don’t help the worst defender on the court against their hottest player, who do you help?
4. No time out called
With veterans like Anthony, Andrea Bargnani and Udrih, no one stepped up and called a time out. If Woodson didn’t order a foul, didn’t order a timeout if Washington scored, what did they talk about in the huddle?
The organization, needs to see the disorganization. Steve Mills, you got your dream job back, do something. Mr. Dolan, if we had traded for Kylie Lowry, would we have won this game?
So now you have possibly no Raymond Felton, Tyson Chandler, Amar’e Stoudemire, Pablo Prigioni, Kenyon Martin, what do you do? Who do you play? Mills and Dolan need to get their acts together, or as Anthony said weeks ago, “we are the laughing stock of the NBA”.
Well Mills and Dolan, what are they saying now?
Please, pretty please, do something, anything!!!
Dr. Eric Kaplan is. Bestselling author www. 5minutemotivator.com