Knick’s Mike Woodson is overwhelmed by playoff basketball.
Mike Woodson is an exceptional regular season coach. He has shown that in Atlanta and now in New York. But there is something about the intensity of playoff basketball that throws him off.
In 2009, when he was coaching the Hawks LeBron James and the Cavaliers swept him 4-0 in the semi-finals. This year during the regular season the Knicks lost 3-0 to the Heat.
These numbers are important because they speak on two facts. Mike Woodson has a hard time coaching playoff basketball and Mike Woodson has a harder time scheming for LeBron James.
Players View predicted that if there was any team that could stop the Heat right now, it was the Knicks.
After a Game 1 100-67 drubbing, we’re hanging onto that sentiment with a sliver of goodwill.
It’s certainly not because of their coaching. It’s because anything can happen when Carmelo Anthony gets hot and the Heat do have a tendency to cool down from time-to-time.
This is where Woodson comes back in. Yesterday afternoon, the key players from the Knicks were mentally worn out by the end of the first quarter.
It was Woodson’s time to shine and push the reset button on his stars and put together a new game plan on the fly.
Either he could not or would not step up or he joined his players in the land of the downtrodden. He looked confused and overwhelmed.
When the Knicks went into the locker room at the half, I could not have been the only person in the nation that joked ‘I wonder if Woodson is coming back out.’
When he coached the Hawks it was the same thing. He grabbed a couple of first round passes but when things got tough he either depended on his players to pull it out or he as a coach laid down.
In the playoffs teams bring new schemes and ideals to the table and the best coaches revel in playing the chess match instead of getting absorbed by it.
Woodson is a good basketball coach. But when will his playoff light shine? When will he step up and punch back and stop being consumed by the process?
When he lead a team to a championship?
He is literally fighting for his job and the best he can do is muster up is being defeated 100-67?
At the post game presser, he said the same old thing as he said after the Atlanta games.
“We wanted to do so well this first game. We kind of got out of rhythm. You have to give them credit their defense was solid throughout the whole game. But it’s just one game, we got to bounce back.”
The clock is ticking and Woodson needs to inspire instead of deflate.