Feb 3, 2014; Milwaukee, WI, USA; New York Knicks head coach Mike Woodson reacts during game against the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2nd quarter at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

New York Knicks: The Coaching Dilemma

Jan 9, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; NBA coach Phil Jackson (left) and actor John Lithgow watch the game between the UCLA Bruins and the Arizona Wildcats at Pauley Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA’s All-Star Weekend just ended, and so far, the rumors circle has been fairly quiet. The New York Knicks may have enjoyed great All-Star Weekend performances from Carmelo Anthony and Tim Hardaway Jr., but pretty soon they will return to reality. The Knicks are just 20-32 heading towards the back nine of their season.

Currently, there are discussions about the firing of head coach, Mike Woodson. The Knicks have been disastrous this season and when that happens changes have to occur. Unfortunately for Woodson, a coach firing may be beneficial.

One of the main names to arise thus far in the speculation has been former Knicks coach, he had one of the most abrupt endings to a coaching career. Yes, Jeff Van Gundy. He has a “history” with the Knicks, so this move is possible, as rumors have been coming out about his return too. Accumulating a 248-172 record with the Knicks over his 7 seasons in New York, Van Gundy would bring a hard-nosed attitude to the Knicks team in dire need of a reshaping. Van Gundy led the Knicks to the finals in 1999, and last coached the Houston Rockets in 2007. He currently is an ESPN NBA color commentator, and he stated on Bill Simmons, the B.S. Report that he would “likely would love to return to the court as an assistant coach.”

We can dream right? Despite turning down many coaching opportunities recently, Phil Jackson was a former player for the Knicks and may want to tackle the challenge of fixing the team and taking them out of the dire state they are in. Having won two rings in New York, it seems as though the Knicks could potentially be up high on Jackson’s list, if he did decide to return to the bench. Having cemented himself in NBA history by gathering a 1155-485 record in his coaching times with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers, Jackson brings a winning mentality that the Knicks currently lack.

When thinking of in house options, Darrel Walker comes up. Walker is the assistant coach for the Knicks right now, and is reportedly greatly respected in the locker room. If that is true he could be a perfect fit as Woodson has reportedly lost control of the locker room which almost always ends in a firing of the coach. Another in house option (to some extent), is former star wing Allan Houston. Allan Houston is a former Knickerbocker from his playing days and still is a part of the Knicks organization. Rumors have been going around about him possibly taking the head coaching job as well as the role of General Manger, potentially giving him an edge within the organization as favorite.

The Knicks have many options if they ultimately do decide to dump Woodson. It would be critical to bring in the right coach to turn things around and possibly save the season and lure Carmelo Anthony to stay in New York.

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