Brooklyn Nets head coach Jason Kidd purposely spilled a drink on the sideline to gain an extra stoppage of play when his team was behind in a game against the Los Angeles Lakers last month. That extra stoppage of play, which essentially turned into a timeout for the Nets to diagram a play that got an open shot for Paul Pierce, cost Kidd a $50,000 fine. Mike Woodson and the New York Knicks don’t seem to value timeouts as much as the Nets, and the Knicks’ misuse of their timeout situation cost them a victory.
Obviously, it is easy to make suggestions about how the Knicks should have handled their late game situation against the Washington Wizards, but Woodson’s explanation for the way things went down is a cause for concern. New York lost a game after allowing a go-ahead layup with nearly seven seconds to go, but they had three timeouts at their disposal when time expired. Woodson claimed that the Knicks didn’t use at least one of their timeouts because he failed to react in a timely manner after Bradley Beal‘s layup put the Wizards ahead.
Anyone who has watched more than five NBA games in their lifetime knows that teams will almost automatically call for a timeout to draw up one last play for a chance to win the game. It appears that Woodson and his coaching staff lack confidence in their own abilities to diagram a winning play when the pressure is highest.
Sure, Carmelo Anthony ended up with the ball in his hands, but there was no reason to expect Anthony to drive the length of the court without calling a timeout to get the team organized. Luckily, Woodson placed the blame for the Knicks’ blunder squarely on his own shoulders, which should help New York determine what changes should be made. Any coach that fails to react in the closing moments of a tight game the way Woodson did needs to be replaced as soon as possible.