The New York Knicks’ J.R. Smith returned to the lineup yesterday after serving his five game suspension for violating the NBA’s drug policy, but it didn’t matter as the San Antonio Spurs whipped the Knicks 120-89.
It appeared that New York didn’t even try in their 31-point loss to the Spurs, which drew some harsh criticism from head coach Mike Woodson.
“We didn’t compete tonight. That’s just unacceptable,” Woodson said. “Right from the start, we let our offense, shots that we missed, dictate how we defended on the other end.”
The Knicks started the game behind 10 points and trailed by 18 by the end of the first quarter. The sold-out Madison Square Garden crowd expressed their disappointment by filling the arena with boos.
When asked whether the Knicks showed any pride in the second half after they were losing by 37 points, Woodson had this to say:
“No. No. Not at all. It’s something that will be addressed. It’s just unacceptable,” the coach said. “It’s my job to push them through it and try to get them over the hump. I know we’re a better team than what we’ve shown.”
Carmelo Anthony co-signed his coach’s assertion.
“It was embarrassing for us to come here on our home court and lose a game like this,” said Anthony, who scored 16 points on 10 shots and sat for most of the fourth quarter. “It wasn’t about losing a game. It was just how we lost the game. We didn’t compete today, and it showed out there on the court.”
This goes down as one of the worst lost in Woodson’s career as a basketball coach.