Mike D’Antoni Knows He’s on the Hot Seat

by August 30, 2011

With the New York media continually insinuating that the Knicks’ new defensive-minded assistant coach Mike Woodson might be in line for Mike D’Antoni’s job should the team struggle next season (assuming there’s a season), D’Antoni acknowledged the precarious nature of his position. From the NY Post: “When [Donnie] Walsh backed out of a verbal agreement to return next season, D’Antoni’s status appeared in trouble. But owner Jim Dolan agreed to bring D’Antoni back, but without an extension, as the Knicks still don’t have a permanent president in place. Glen Grunwald, a college teammate of Woodson’s at Indiana, is interim president, and recommended Woodson to D’Antoni. ‘I think all coaches are on a one-year deal,’ D’Antoni said on a conference call. ‘It’s whether you get a paid vacation, but we all have to do something to earn another year, especially with the Knicks. It’s not like they have to keep [you] around because they’re financially strapped. We have to produce. Whether it’s one or 10, it doesn’t matter. It’s going to come down to next year.’ Explaining the Woodson move, D’Antoni admitted the expectations are the Knicks must do better than last season when they were swept by Boston in the first round of the playoffs. ‘I’m on a one-year deal, and we could have a quick turnaround,’ D’Antoni said, referring to free agency and training camp. ‘It’s a special type situation. We got the best of everything. Head-coaching experience was very important to have the respect of the players. We got to have a better team next year. It’s good to have someone who’s been through it already, knowing what I need.'”