Melo: 'You can't blame Woody'

November, 11, 2013
11/11/13
6:42
PM ET
Carmelo AnthonyJim McIsaac/Getty ImagesCarmelo Anthony defended his embattled head coach Monday.
GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- There's plenty of blame to go around when a team loses by 31 at home.

But Carmelo Anthony says don't point the finger at New York Knicks coach Mike Woodson even though some fans chanted for the coach's job during a 120-89 loss to the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday.

“It’s New York,” Anthony said of the upset fans. “It happens. Woody’s not out there playing. We’re out there playing. You can’t blame Woody. We’re not, as a team, giving him the effort that he’s looking for and we’ve got to change that.”

Woodson's job status has been a topic of discussion and the head coach said during an interview on ESPN New York 98.7 last week that he wasn't going to look over his shoulders.

Replacing Tyson: For at least the next month, the Knicks have to stay afloat without Tyson Chandler, who is sidelined with a small non-displaced fracture of his right fibula.

That's a lot of defense and shot-blocking to replace.

"I guess I’ve gotta do more shot blocking," Anthony cracked. "I guess I gotta be the center."

As much as Anthony does for the team, he can't do it all. But after seeing how the Spurs scored so easily, he does know that the Knicks' defense needs to improve somehow without Chandler. He knows teams will be attacking the Knicks nightly.

"That’s any game plan when you don’t see a shot blocker in the paint," Anthony said. "I know my eyes get big when I don’t see a shot blocker in the paint, so I guess that was the case. That was their game plan to attack us when we didn’t have any shot blockers in there, anybody to change the dynamic of the game."

Woodson didn't blame Sunday's defensive debacle on Chandler's absence. He wants to see his players display more effort.

"Wasn’t nothing pretty about our game," Woodson said. "You give up 17 layups, that doesn’t have anything to do with somebody being at the rim. That is just individual defense, on the ball, where we had a lot of breakdowns as of late. … Give up 17 layups and you are not going to beat anybody doing that. That is something we got to learn from and we got to get better in that area in terms of individual defense on the ball."

Big or small: Woodson was asked if he will make any lineup changes following the blowout loss to the Spurs.

"I don't know," Woodson said.

Woodson has started Andrea Bargnani at center for the past two games to go with Anthony at power forward and Iman Shumpert at small forward. Raymond Felton and Pablo Prigioni started in the backcourt.
Ohm Youngmisuk has covered the Giants, Jets and the NFL since 2006. Prior to that, he covered the Nets, Knicks and the NBA for nearly a decade. He joined ESPNNewYork.com after working at the New York Daily News for almost 12 years and is a graduate of Michigan State University.
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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Carmelo Anthony
PTS AST STL MIN
24.0 3.2 0.9 36.7
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsA. Stoude... 7.4
AssistsJ. Calderon 4.2
StealsP. Prigioni 1.3
BlocksS. Dalembert 1.2