Knicks Coach Mike D'Antoni Quits, Mike Woodson in as Interim - NBC New York

Knicks Coach Mike D'Antoni Quits, Mike Woodson in as Interim

The coach leaves a team that struggled to find an identity this season.



    Knicks Coach Mike D'Antoni Quits, Mike Woodson in as Interim
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    Mike D'Antoni

    Mike D'Antoni is out as coach of the Knicks, who are in danger of missing the playoffs when he said they should contend for a championship.

    Assistant coach Mike Woodson will serve as interim head coach.

    Knicks owner Jim Dolan said in a statement that he and D'Antoni "mutually agreed that it would be best for the organization if he did not continue in his role as coach of the Knicks."

    D'Antoni's departure comes less than a month after he seemed rejuvenated by the emergence of Jeremy Lin, the undrafted point guard from Harvard who came off the end of the bench and proved to be the player who could properly run the offensive system.

    But D'Antoni, in his third season with the Knicks, leaves amid growing outcry over the team's failure to capitalize on its superstars' potential and allegations that he had lost the locker room.

    After the emergence of Linsanity earlier this year, the team has struggled. The Knicks, now 18-24, have flailed since Carmelo Anthony returned to the team and are in danger of not making the playoffs. The team is 2-8 since Anthony has returned from an injury.

    When the Knicks dropped their fifth straight game at Madison Square Garden on Sunday, the hometown crowd cheered "Fire D'Antoni." 

    The Knicks have fallen into a tie for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference entering Wednesday's game against Portland. While trying to solve things on the court, they're also dealing with stories about their problems off it, from players' reported disappointment in D'Antoni to Anthony's bad performances and body language.

    Anthony denied newspaper reports Wednesday that he would welcome a trade from the team.

    "No, no, no, no. Let's nip this in the bud right now. No," Anthony said after the Knicks' morning shootaround.

    "I don't know where that came from. I'm tired of hearing it. It came out this morning from I guess an anonymous source. I'm tired of anonymous sources. I don't want to be traded. I don't know where that foolishness came from, so let's put a cap on that and make this the last time I hear about that."

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