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Wednesday, December 25, 2013
Udrih tired of criticism (from Woodson?)

By Ian Begley

NEW YORK -- Beno Udrih isn't happy about people criticizing his play. He doesn't want to "point fingers" at a specific culprit, but it's pretty clear that he's talking about coach Mike Woodson.

"I kind of feel like when I do the right thing, it's not the right thing in some people's eyes. It's just tough. It's easy to point fingers when the team loses. But it comes down to, we are a team, we lose together. No matter who makes a mistake or who doesn't, it's still a team loss," Udrih said. "So I think all of this stuff should be kept out of the media and not call certain people out or something. We've just got to go out there and fix it and watch video and fix it as a team."

Again, Udrih didn't want to name names. But it's pretty clear that he's unhappy that Woodson was critical of him in the wake of the Knicks' one-point loss to Washington last week.

Russell Westbrook
Beno Udrih's, right, best wasn't good enough against Russell Westbrook and the Thunder on Wednesday.
Woodson said that Udrih "opened the floodgates" for Washington's Bradley Beal to get to the basket for an uncontested layup with 6.9 seconds to go. The Knicks had a foul to give and failed to do so. They became a national punch line for a few days following the loss.

"I got pointed out a couple of times that I think it was unfortunately a team loss at the end," Udrih said.

After New York's 123-94 loss to Oklahoma City on Wednesday, Woodson said Udrih "struggled a little bit." The 31-year-old shot 1-for-6 from the floor with six assists and two turnovers. He badly missed three shots (one hit the side of the backboard) and had one blocked.

"Beno struggled a little bit tonight, and I am going to need Beno to play because I don’t know when [Raymond Felton and Pablo Prigioni] are going to actually come back," Woodson said.

Udrih hinted the criticism he's taken has impacted his confidence on the floor.

"Sometimes I have a feeling like when I [make] a mistake they have a feeling that I'm making the mistake on purpose. As weird as it sounds, that's how I feel," Udrih said.

Udrih signed a veteran's minimum contract with the Knicks over the summer to be the team's third point guard. The feeling at the time was that Udrih would get significant playing time, because Woodson would play the Felton-Prigioni backcourt for heavy minutes, making Udrih the de facto backup.

Woodson, though, has gone away from the two-point guard lineup, and Udrih hadn't received much playing time before Felton (hamstring/groin) and Prigioni (toe) went down with injuries.

Udrih wasn't complaining about playing time on Wednesday, though. It was more about the criticism of his play.

"I've always been pretty good with not turning over the ball and this year it's totally different. I don't know what happened that summer. I don't think I forgot [how] to play basketball. So there's a lot of factors," he said. "You can point fingers at me as much as you can, but if things don't work it's not one person's fault. ... It's a team sport."

Udrih says the team hasn't tuned Woodson out, but added, "It's tough to say. It's tough to be in his shoes, too. I'm not just saying his message doesn't come across. Maybe we're not hearing the right thing, or I just don't know. We all have to communicate better as people."

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