New York Knicks: 10 Reasons Why Knicks Will Regret Bringing Back Mike Woodson

Peter Emerick@@peteremerickSenior Writer IIMay 18, 2012

New York Knicks: 10 Reasons Why Knicks Will Regret Bringing Back Mike Woodson

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    The New York Post is reporting that the New York Knicks are planning on making Mike Woodson their head coach for the next few seasons.

    While a number of fans will be excited to hear that Woodson could realistically be running the show in the Big Apple for the next few years, the Knicks' intentions in signing Woodson are somewhat worrisome.

    With other coaches like Phil Jackson reportedly interested in making a return to the world of coaching, the Knicks' reported decision to stick with Woodson so quickly is surprising.

    Ahead is a list of 10 reasons why the Knicks will regret bringing back Woodson, if that is the direction they choose to go in.

Mike Woodson Certainly Isn't a Long-Term Fix

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    Mike Woodson is the kind of head coach who will make the Knicks competitive each year, even helping the Knicks make first-round playoff appearances on a consistent basis. 

    That's not the kind of "quick fix" that the Knicks, as a franchise, need.

    The Knicks need a coach who is going to be a long-term difference maker.  A coach who is going to come in, shake things up and win games his way, as he transforms a habitually underperforming franchise into a successful one.

    By signing Woodson, the Knicks tried to catch lightning in a bottle, hoping that Woodson would be the coach that the Knicks could rally around for the next few years.  Sadly that won't be true, as we saw in the 2012 playoffs.

    The Knicks needed a long-term fix at the head coaching spot, and they didn't get that in Woodson.

While 2011-12 Wasn't Bad, It Wasn't That Great Either

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    There's no doubt that Mike Woodson jumped in and saved the 2011-12 season for the New York Knicks, but that doesn't mean he turned the Knicks into a legitimate contender in the East.

    While Woodson helped the Knicks to a 19-10 record under his leadership, he also benefited from a schedule that included a number of games against beatable teams.

    The one thing Woodson couldn't do in 2012 that he'll desperately struggle with next season is figure out a way to get Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire to work together, which is something they don't seem focused on doing.

    I hate to say it, but I think the kind of season the Knicks had in 2012 will be exactly what fans can expect of the Knicks under the leadership of Woodson.

    I'm not talking about 19-10 record either.  I'm talking about the first-round playoff exit.  If the Knicks want a guy who can repeat the success of 2012 nine times out of 10, then Woodson is their man. 

Mike Woodson's Defensive Mindset Doesn't Work with Knicks Roster

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    The Knicks roster, as it is right now, isn't suited to fit Mike Woodson's defense-first mindset.

    If the Knicks roster remains intact for the start of the 2013 season, they will be better off beating teams with explosive offensive production than they are with staunch defense.

    Guys like Carmelo Anthony, Amar'e Stoudemire and J.R. Smith are never going to be lock-down defenders, and the Knicks just need to accept that instead of trying to transform the way those players approach the game.

    Sure, the Knicks have the 2012 Defensive Player of the Year in Tyson Chandler on their roster, but Chandler is the kind of player who could win that award even if he played for the Charlotte Bobcats.  Chandler's dominance is not a reflection of the man at the helm.  It's a reflection of the dominant player he is. 

    Woodson's adherence to making the Knicks a defensively-minded team is something that the Knicks will regret committing to sooner than later. 

The Knicks Had Better Coaching Options

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    The New York Knicks could've gone a number of directions with their head coaching position, but instead of taking a risk on a new coach, they made the safe decision of sticking with Woodson.

    While that wasn't a terrible move, it certainly wasn't the best move for the franchise. 

    With coaches like Patrick Ewing, Jerry Sloan, Phil Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy speculated as possible long-term options for the Knicks, going with Woodson seems like the less attractive option.

    Who knows if any of those individuals would've actually been interesting in the Knicks' head coaching gig, but to move ahead with Woodson as quickly as the Knicks did just doesn't make that much sense.  

    It's certainly a decision that has the possibility of holding the Knicks in the realm of mediocrity as a franchise for at least the next few seasons. 

Woodson Never Got It Done with the Atlanta Hawks

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    Mike Woodson wasn't an awful coach with the Atlanta Hawks.  But his overall record of 206 wins 286 losses certainly isn't anything to get all that excited about.

    Aside from Woodson's overall record with the Hawks, another aspect of Woodson's performance that is concerning is his inability to get an adequately talented Hawks team out of the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

    The Knicks need a coach who has a proven track record in the playoffs because the Knicks are the kind of franchise that won't be satisfied with first-round playoff exits every year.

    While the Knicks roster is arguably better than the talent Woodson had in Atlanta, there's no doubt that it's somewhat similar in that both teams are/were extremely athletic.

    The point is that the Knicks shouldn't expect Woodson to do more than he did in Atlanta, and that's not a good thing for the future of the Knicks franchise. 

Woodson Doesn't Have What It Takes to Manage Egos of 'Melo and Amar'e

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    I'm not saying that Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire have egos that are out of control.  I'm simply saying that Woodson doesn't have the kind of personality and coaching aptitude it takes to work with bona fide superstars.

    Woodson had a difficult time in Atlanta trying to keep Josh Smith and Joe Johnson happy.  The job he now has in New York isn't going to be easier because 'Melo and Amar'e don't exactly understand how to work together for a common goal.

    It takes a truly adept coach to understand how to motivate players like 'Melo and Amar'e to be on the same page and to share the spotlight in a city like New York.

    Unfortunately for the Knicks, Woodson isn't the kind of coach that is going to be able to do that either.  'Melo and Amar'e were the downfall of one coach already.  Could they be the downfall of another?

Knicks Won't Rally Around Woodson in 2013 Like They Did This Season

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    A major part of the Knicks' second-half surge in 2012 was thanks to the fact that the players could rally around Woodson as the coach who helped save their season.

    That luxury won't be available to the Knicks next season because the pressure placed on Woodson will be at an all-time high.

    Part of why Mike D'Antoni failed as a head coach with the Knicks was because he wasn't able to motivate his players or provide them with something to believe in.

    Woodson was able to do that in the short term this past season, but he won't be able to do that next year, as all the pressure will be on him.

    I wouldn't be surprised if Woodson has a falling out with his players much like D'Antoni had this past season.  If the season doesn't start off well that's what Knicks' fans can be prepared for. 

Knicks Need a Coach with a More Creative Offensive Mind

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    Mike Woodson has never been known for his offensive mindset when it comes to coaching.

    Woodson was brought in on Mike D'Antoni's staff to be the "defensive specialist," and we all saw how that worked out during the first half of the 2012 regular season.

    There's no doubt that Woodson is a defensively-minded coach, but that's not exactly what the Knicks need.  The Knicks need a coach who is less geared toward coaching with a offensive or defensive mindset.  They need a coach who understands the balance of the game and knows how to integrate that balance into the Knicks' roster rotations.

    In all honesty, Woodson's defensively-minded coaching talents are better suited for an assistant position than they are for a head coaching job. 

Woodson's Playoff Record Isn't All That Impressive

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    In his seven years as an NBA head coach, Mike Woodson has accumulated a playoff record of just 14 wins and 21 losses.

    Sure, getting to the playoffs is nice.  I'm pretty sure that the more important piece of the playoff puzzle for the Knicks franchise is racking up playoff wins and Eastern Conference Finals appearances.

    Woodson has led teams to the first round of the playoffs four times and into the semifinals only two times.  That kind of playoff record isn't what the Knicks need, especially when there were better coaching options available.

    If playoff success is truly a focus for the Knicks, then bringing back Woodson for 2013 was certainly a mistake because he won't be able to get the Knicks out of the first round.  If he fails in the first round again, it won't be a shock because that's what Woodson's past has proven he's capable of.

Phil Jackson Was/Is Still Available

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    Sources close to CBS's Ken Burger have indicated that Phil Jackson once again has "the itch" to get back into the game of coaching.

    While that's good news for NBA teams looking for their head coach of the future, it's bad news for the Knicks because they've committed to Mike Woodson.

    The Knicks are the kind of high-profile franchise that could certainly have enticed Jackson to get back into the coaching game, and for them to re-sign Woodson so quickly was an irresponsible move as an NBA franchise.

    Jackson is not only a legendary head coach, he's also the kind of figure head that the Knicks could have seriously benefited from bringing in.

    Woodson isn't a terrible head coach, but when a guy like Jackson is available and potentially interested in returning to coaching, you have to at least test the waters a little more than the Knicks apparently did.