The New York Knicks dropped their sixth consecutive game Sunday in Chicago to a streaking Chicago Bulls squad that was led by a triple-double by Joakim Noah. According to CBSsports.com, Noah finished the day with 13 points, 12 rebounds and 14 assists for his fifth career triple-double and a 109-90 win over the struggling Knicks.
The Bulls have won nine of their last 10 games and were sporting a balanced attack Sunday with seven players scoring in double digits. Tyson Chandler posted 22 rebounds for the Knicks in the loss but was no match for Noah throughout the afternoon. The Bulls jumped out to a 16-1 lead at the start of the game and never looked back. New York trailed by 25 points in the second quarter, which makes Sunday’s game the third consecutive one that the Knicks have trailed by 25.
ESPN New York sums up the Knicks at this point in the season by stating in their story on Sunday’s game:
“They’ve lost six straight and nine of 10. They are a season-high 18 games under.500 and 6 1/2 games out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 21 to play.”
Sunday’s contest with the Bulls was the first of a three game road trip that New York will embark on after dropping a home contest to the Golden State Warriors on Friday night by 23 points. After Friday’s loss, Knicks All-Star Carmelo Anthony was asked by the media if he thought his team had the mental fortitude to make a late run at the postseason. ESPN New York quoted Anthony as answering:
“We’re going to be tested, especially on this road trip right now. … We’re definitely going to be tested on this road trip,” Anthony said.
Knicks coach Mike Woodson, who many believe to be on his out of the New York Knicks organization at the end of the season, was more optimistic when asked the same question after Friday’s game. The same ESPN story quoted Woodson as saying; “We got to still stay in the moment,… Like I told them in the locker room: You still got a shot at it.”
Within the last decade the Knicks have had seven different head coaches and are now looking like they may be making yet another switch before next season. Marc Berman of The New York Post reported on Mar. 1 that the Knicks may try to court Chicago coach Tom Thibodeau from the Bulls. Berman also wrote that New York may first try to sway former Knicks coach Jeff Van Gundy out of retirement. He states in the story that, “If the Knicks can’t get Van Gundy out of coaching retirement — and they may try — Thibodeau’s name likely would top the Knicks’ list.”
Moving Thibodeau to the Knicks, where he was once an assistant under Van Gundy, could be trickier than expected as the coach has three years left on his contract with the Bulls, but has reportedly experienced friction with GM Gar Forman.