Mike Woodson led the Knicks to the playoffs despite their many injuries and the 18-24 record they had when he took over as interim head coach after Mike D’Antoni’s resignation. Today, Woodson, who coached the Atlanta Hawks from 2004 to 2010, signed a contract extension and can remove the interim from his title.
New York won 18 of its final 24 regular season games, with Woodson choreographing a rejuvenated defense and a system that played to the strength of his cast. Knicks management didn’t go looking for the sexy choice this time around, despite rumors that they’d be courting Phil Jackson or John Calipari to take the reins. This time, they made the smart choice.
Terms of Woodson’s multi-year extension were not immediately available, but sources told Stephen A. Smith of ESPNNewYork.com that the deal is for two years — with an option for a third — and pays about $4 million per season.
In a statement, Woodson said, “I’m very humbled and honored to continue coaching the franchise where I started my NBA career. Our goal is to build off the success we had at the end of last season and to continue our quest of bringing an NBA championship to Madison Square Garden.”
Owner James Dolan said, “Mike took over the team under challenging circumstances and made it clear, starting on Day One, that he was going to hold every player on our roster accountable. We saw a significant improvement since Mike took over and believe our team will only keep improving under Mike’s direction.”