FRIDAY, 1:10pm: Woodson and several assistants expect to be fired before the All-Star break, sources tell Michael Scotto of SheridanHoops.com. Still, Bleacher Report’s Howard Beck hears from sources who the believe the team will let Woodson finish the season.
WEDNESDAY, 8:29am: Knicks coach Mike Woodson has seemingly been on unsteady ground much of the season, and with losses and internal criticism mounting, there’s a chance the team will dismiss Woodson before the February 20th trade deadline, a source tells Steve Popper of The Bergen Record. The Knicks hit a new low with a loss to the league-worst Bucks on Monday, and Amar’e Stoudemire is the latest to question the coach’s decision-making.
Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler have also voiced displeasure with some of Woodson’s on-court moves. Owner James Dolan gave Woodson a vote of confidence in November, but that pronouncement didn’t seem to have much staying power, and by December upper management was evaluating him on a game-by-game basis. Woodson helped draw himself back from the brink with a win over the Bucks that month, but it sounds like Monday’s loss has pushed the coach back in the other direction.
The Knicks are in tenth place in the Eastern Conference at 19-29, two games out of the final playoff spot, and they have little reason to be content with entering the draft lottery, since they traded their 2014 first-round pick in the deal to acquire Anthony. A rumor earlier this season suggested assistant GM Allan Houston might be in line to take over for Woodson if the team changes coaches. Multiple reports have linked the Knicks to Tom Thibodeau, but that seems a long shot, and Thibodeau almost certainly wouldn’t leave the Bulls for New York until after the season.