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Carmelo Anthony publicly supports Mike Woodson, calls him a ‘father figure’

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In a somewhat surprising turn of events, Carmelo Anthony, seemingly in a state in denial over how the Knicks missed the postseason, came out and publicly supported embattled head coach Mike Woodson during comments made on Thursday.

“Mike Woodson has become a guy I can talk to, almost a father figure, a friend, a guy I can bounce stuff off of,’’ Anthony said, via the New York Post. “When that time comes, if it’s ready for me to step up and take the next step, [and say whether] Mike Woodson needs to stay or go — I don’t think it will come down to that — but I would back him. If he needs my recommendation, here or anywhere else, I’d back him. I have nothing bad to say about Mike Woodson. For me as a player, I had some of my best years under Mike Woodson.’’

It apparently is almost a near certainty that Woodson — who acknowledged earlier this season that he’s failed the team in some respects — will not be back, as new team president Phil Jackson likely would like to bring in his own coach who would install the Zen Master’s triangle offense. Reports indicate that Steve Kerr ranks high on Jackson’s list if and when Woodson is pink-slipped. Kerr of course ran Jackson’s triangle offense as a point guard with the Chicago Bulls.

All signs indicate that Woodson is as good as gone — although it should be noted that he very possibly would have been fired had Jackson not taken over — as he reportedly is uninvolved with exit interviews, as Jackson and general manager Steve Mills are handling those duties.

With all that in mind, that makes the decision by Carmelo — who has feuded with his coach on occasion — to endorse Woodson such a curious one. Then again, Anthony is correct in his assertion that his game has flourished under Woodson.

Further, Anthony may not even be with the team next season anyway. Why should he care who is coaching the Knicks in the first place? Could it be that by endorsing a coach who is on his way out Anthony is giving himself an excuse and reason for departing should he opt to move on from the Knicks?

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