Knicks near break, won’t blame fatigue for slump

The Knicks wouldn't blame fatigue for their struggles against the Wizards and Clippers. Credit: Getty Images
The Knicks wouldn’t blame fatigue for their struggles against the Wizards and Clippers.
Credit: Getty Images

Knicks head coach Mike Woodson is an optimist, which would explain why he seemed a little flummoxed when asked if losing two of their last three games was a sign of things to come.

“You look at it as two [losses] out of three, but I think we’ve won seven of our last 10 games. That’s how I look at it,” Woodson said. “We’ve got a big, important game [tonight] before we go into the break, so we’ve got to finish it off. Then, we’ll go and sit for three or four days and kind of rethink how we can be better.”
Woodson does not believe fatigue is weighing down his team’s performances — no matter what recent losses to the Wizards and Clippers may have shown down the stretch.

“If that was the case, I don’t think we’d be in the position we’re in today,” Woodson said, dispelling the fatigue factor. “We’ve got 82 games just like everybody else. We’ve got a solid roster, [and] I like the makeup of our team so, no, I wouldn’t use fatigue as an excuse.”

Woodson said he thinks the real culprit isn’t fatigue, but instead the Knicks’ defense, or a lack thereof.

New York allowed an average of 104 points in their two recent losses, meaning the defensive intensity has waned a bit in his eyes.

Amar’e Stoudemire has never been known for his defense, but he’s bought into Woodson’s defensive philosophy.

“We have offensive juggernauts, guys who can score the ball. We have guys who can score and lots of weapons we can use,” said Stoudemire. “I feel we have a great team on both ends, [and] we know it all starts on the defensive end.”

Ultimately, said Woodson, the Knicks have done mostly everything right. He took pride in noting that his squad has led the Atlantic Division wire to wire so far. Some rest during the All-Star weekend, and some fine-tuning once they return will do the Knicks some good, allowed Woodson.

“We still have a lot of season to play and guys have to be committed to our cause, [but] our team has been pretty committed,” Woodson said. “For the most part we’ve been pretty good this season in terms of our play. I’m happy with where we sit today in terms of being at the top of our division. I’ll take that.”

Knicks notes …

» Tyson Chandler went through a half-practice so he could get treatment on his ankle. Woodson said Chandler is fine and he’ll definitely play on Wednesday: “He didn’t hurt it, but it was a little sore. He went through our conditioning part of practice, and then it was a little sore so we pulled him out. He’s just getting some treatment on it.”

» Stoudemire agreed with both Woodson and Carmelo Anthony in that the Knicks are perfect just the way they are, as he eschewed the Iman Shumpert trade rumor: “We’re confident in the guys we have. And we still have guys that are still recovering from injuries. We’re solid where we are and just need to keep improving on what we’re doing.”

Follow Knicks beat writer Tony Williams on Twitter @TBone8.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

PHOTO: Queen Elizabeth pulls off epic photobomb

The selfie / photobomb has gone viral.

Local

Astoria minivan crash kills 1, injures 6: NYPD

Anthony Boyd, 45, died soon after what investigators believe was some sort of medical emergency as he drove his family through Astoria on Sunday afternoon.

Local

NYC pension funds valued at $160b: Scott Stringer

The five NYC pension funds that thousands of city employees contribute to saw its fifth year in a row of increased returns, up $23 billion from last year.

International

Sierra Leone Ebola patient, recovered from family, dies…

An Ebola patient whose family sparked a nationwide hunt when they forcefully removed her from a treatment center and took her to a traditional healer has died.

Television

Kacy Catanzaro credits mind over body in "American…

Kacy Catanzaro credits her victory to mental focus and upper body strength.

Movies

The 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' trailer is…

Watch 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' trailer.

Music

Newport Folk Festival: Photo gallery of 35 moments…

As has been the tradition since Bob Dylan plugged in a bajillion years ago, the Newport Folk Festival embraces more musical genres than its name implies.

Music

MKTO: Behind the bromance

MKTO's Malcolm Kelley and Tony Oller talk about the American Dream tour, Demi Lovato and getting turned down by girls.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

MLB

Yankees GM Brian Cashman breaks down art of…

The action frequently accelerates as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, as it will on Thursday.

Tech

Amazon offers 3D printing to customize earrings, bobble…

By Deepa SeetharamanSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc will offer 3D printing services that allow customers to customize and build earrings, bobble head toys and…

Wellbeing

This Week In Health: Friends share similar DNA,…

Friends share similar DNA, study finds Location: U.S. Study subjects: Nearly 2,000 people Results: When it comes to our social networks, it seems that birds of…

Education

Are liberal arts colleges turning away from the…

Bryn Mawr College, a small women's college located just outside of Philadelphia, announced last week that it would be making standardized tests like the SAT…

Education

Recent grads discover school superintendent plagiarized parts of…

  Two recent high school graduates made a surprising discovery about the commencement speech their school superintendent delivered at their graduation: portions of it was copied…