Knicks Fire Head Coach Woodson

  on April 21 2014 12:13 PM
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Knicks head coach Mike Woodson was on the hot seat for much of the 2013-2014 season. Reuters

The New York Knicks have fired head coach Mike Woodson, the team announced on Monday as new president Phil Jackson made his first big move to put his stamp on the club.
 
Jackson, hired last month to turn around the struggling franchise, announced in a news release that the entire coaching staff had been relieved of their duties.
 
"I have a tremendous amount of respect for Mike Woodson and his entire staff," said Jackson, who won a record 11 NBA titles as head coach of the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers in the previous two decades.
 
"The coaches and players on this team had an extremely difficult 2013-14 season, and blame should not be put on one individual.
 
"But the time has come for change throughout the franchise as we start the journey to assess and build this team for next season and beyond."
 
The Knicks finished the season with a 37-45 record and missed the playoffs after winning the division title last year and advancing to the Eastern Conference semi-finals.
 
In parts of three seasons with the Knicks, Woodson compiled an overall record of 109-79 that included two consecutive NBA playoff appearances and an Atlantic Division title - the team's first in 19 years.
 
Woodson, 56, formerly coached the Atlanta Hawks and has a career head coaching record of 315-365.
 
The search for a new coaching staff will begin immediately, the team said.
 
Jackson, 68, was officially appointed in March as the Knicks president and vowed to help restore a winning culture to the franchise.
 
Before turning to coaching, Jackson won two NBA titles with the Knicks in the early 1970s, the last time the franchise has won the championship.
 
(Reporting by Larry Fine; Editing by Julian Linden)

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