The Knicks lost to the Bucks earlier this week, a team that also happens to have the worst record in the NBA. So when Steve Popper of the Bergen Record reported that a source says Knicks coach Mike Woodson might not be long for New York, we thought about possible replacements. Then we saw the profile by Yahoo’s Marc J. Spears on Patrick Ewing‘s decade plus post-retirement career where he’s been an assistant coach for some of the best basketball minds in the league, and everything clicked into place. Patrick Ewing should be the new coach of the Knicks.
Here’s the damaging part for Woodson in Popper’s piece:
And what they had to say wasn’t exactly reassuring â€” Woodson’s words not encouraging for the team’s fading chances and in particular, the usually positive [Amare'e] Stoudemire‘s words not encouraging for Woodson, whom one league source said could be removed before the Feb. 20 trade deadline.
Stoudemire joined what has been a chorus of players with little to say that sounds as if it is backing Woodson. With bad losses mounting and the season running down, earlier assurances from Madison Square Garden chairman James Dolan that no changes were going to be made may be as hollow as Woodson’s insistence that the Knicks still can be a power in the Eastern Conference.
Most Knicks fans know what’s happening here. After seemingly innocuous comments from players that â€” upon closer examination â€” smack of a veiled anti-Woodson theme, the dam appears close to breaking. Whether Woodson can win enough to make some noise in the playoffs, remains to be seen. But that’s what it’ll probably take to stick around after this season, and even that might not be enough depending on what happens in free agency this summer.
Following their rock n’ rolla owner predicting title contention this summer, the Knicks are 19-29 through the season’s first half. Woodson appears pre-destined for unemployment soon, and if he’s gone then we might have an answer for the next faux-overseer of the Knicks fiefdom (and yes, Dolan is the real Lord, sigh).
Patrick Ewing has been an assistant coach for 10 years after retiring in 2002. But he has yet to catch on as anything more than an associate head coach, which is his current job title with the over-achieving Bobcats this season.
Wouldn’t Patrick be a great choice as Knicks coach â€” and not just for the nostalgia? It’s not as crazy as it might first sound.