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Tuesday, February 11, 2014
Opening Tip: Must win vs. Kings?

By Ohm Youngmisuk

NEW YORK -- On the surface, Wednesday night's Kings-Knicks game doesn’t look like much is at stake for either team.

The Knicks are 20-31, and the Kings are struggling at 17-34. But make no mistake, Wednesday’s game is critical for the Knicks. They’ve lost three of their past four games.

With Mike Woodson’s job possibly hanging in the balance, the Knicks desperately could use a win to go into the All-Star break with some good vibes.

“I don’t want to say it’s a must-win,” Carmelo Anthony said Monday night at Chelsea Piers at the 15th annual Knicks Bowl to raise money for the Garden of Dreams Foundation. “But it is a game that we got to take care of going into the break, knowing our schedule after the break.”

If the Knicks were to drop yet another disappointing home loss to a losing team like the Kings, talk will only intensify about what possible changes the Knicks could make.

Woodson’s seat will only get hotter. And players might go into the break on edge with the Feb. 20 trading deadline looming.

“At this point, man, there is always going to be a different story every day,” Anthony said when asked about Woodson’s job status being an issue known to the players. “We got to deal with it, he’s got to deal with it, we got to roll with the punches.

“Every day is not going to be all rosy especially with our situation right now.”

The Knicks have to play 19 of their remaining 31 games on the road, making their pursuit of a playoff spot all the more difficult.

“This is a challenge for us all,” Tyson Chandler said. “I think it is going to show exactly what we are made of and what type of character is on the team.”

Up now: Melo says he’s a "little disappointed" with the Knicks' record as they near the All-Star break.

Woodson says he's “going to be back” when the Knicks return from All-Star weekend.

Woody doesn’t want bad thoughts to creep into his players’ heads, whether it be fretting about the looming trade deadline or any other potential changes.

What’s next: The Knicks play the Kings on Wednesday night at the Garden in their get-away game before the All-Star break.

Question of the day: Is Wednesday’s game against the Kings a must-win entering the break with Woodson’s job a daily issue?