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Knicks Notes: Atlantic, Heat, Shumpert, Woodson

On a Sunday chock full of NBA action, let's first head to Madison Square Garden to check in on the latest news from the Knicks.

  • While some pundits question if the Knicks will even make the playoffs, the team has its sights on stealing the Atlantic Division title from the Celtics, writes Marc Berman of the New York Post. Knicks head coach Mike Woodson wants his players hungry and believing in themselves that they can make up the three games that separate the Knicks and the Celtics in the standings. The Knicks are 9-0 at home since Woodson took over as the interim head coach of the team on March 14th and would be the fourth seed in the playoffs if they win the Atlantic.
  • Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News says the Heat would face the Knicks in the first round of the playoffs if the season ended today but do not view them as an easy opponent. Lawrence contends LeBron James has too much respect for Carmelo Anthony as a player to publicly dismiss the Knicks' chances of giving the Heat a competitive series. The Heat head to the Garden Sunday afternoon in their lone Manhattan appearance of the season.
  • Knicks rookie Iman Shumpert sat down with New York Post columnist Steve Serby and expressed his confidence in the Knicks with the playoffs looming. Not only does Shumpert believe the Knicks will make the playoffs, but the former Georgia Tech star expects his team will be able to compete with the Heat if the two teams are matched up against each other in the first round. In what proves to be a compelling interview, Shumpert discusses his love for defense and what it's like to guard some of the top players in the league.
  • Mike Lupica of the New York Daily News makes the argument that Mike Woodson should remain the head coach of the Knicks heading into next season given his body of work. He's led the team to a 13-4 record since taking over the team and has gotten more out of beleaguered superstar Carmelo Anthony than Knicks fans ever thought possible. Lupica says Woodson has held the team accountable and developed a sound defensive system that was non-existent under former head coach Mike D'Antoni. 

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