The New York Knicks were the No. 2 seed in the East last year but failed to make the playoffs in 2013-14. Now, coach Mike Woodson‘s job may be on the line.
According to ESPN New York, Woodson is expected to hear the verdict early next week, and the coach is “bracing for the worst.” Woodson has not heard his fate yet, but it was not a positive sign that the Knicks players underwent their exit interviews Thursday without Woodson being present.
ESPN NBA insider Stephen A. Smith said on SportsCenter that Woodson would prefer if Jackson reached out to Woodson’s agent if he intends to fire him rather than do so in a meeting.
Woodson, who has manned the Knicks sidelines for the past two seasons and took over for Mike D’Antoni on an interim basis after he was fired in 2011, owns a 99-79 mark during his time in New York. Last season, he helped the Knicks reach 54 wins, an Atlantic Division title and a first-round playoff victory for the first time in 13 years. The team was eventually bounced out in the second round by the Indiana Pacers.
Earlier in the week, Woodson stated his claim as to why he should remain the Knicks’ head coach, explaining he’s the “only guy for this job.”
“Unfortunately this year just didn’t go according to plan,” Woodson said before the regular-season finale against the Toronto Raptoprs. “So is it fair to let me go? I don’t think so, but again, I don’t make that decision. That’s got to come from the top.
“(I’m the) the only guy for this job. I’ve always said that and I don’t mean that in a braggadocios way.”
Widespread speculation suggests Jackson will hand select one of “his guys” to replace Woodson, and one such candidate is his former point guard Steve Kerr. Currently an NBA analyst for TNT, Kerr told the New York Post he “absolutely expects” to be offered the job, and if and when he does, “he’s definitely accepting it.”