- Ohm Youngmisuk, ESPN Staff Writer
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Coach Mike Woodson said he is not worried about his job security nor is he constantly looking over his shoulder with the New York Knicks off to a slow start.
The Knicks (1-3) have lost three straight games, and Woodson felt that in two of them (Minnesota and Charlotte) the team wasn't very competitive early. And the coach just lost Tyson Chandler, his starting center and best defensive player, for four to six weeks with a small non-displaced fracture of his right fibula.
"I have been at this thing 30 years," Woodson said in an interview on ESPN New York 98.7 radio. "And the one thing I never and will never do is look over my shoulder. I won't do that. I got too much pride for that. I think what we have done here for the last few years, we made some major ground and some major steps.
"But this is a different year. That team that played and won 54 games is not here. It is my job as a coach to get this team to gel and play at a high level. If I got to always look over my shoulders, then I can't do my job, so that is why I never do that. Try to look ahead, that is what is staring at me right now."
Woodson was asked on the Stephen A. Smith and Ryan Ruocco Show whether he thinks he has to get the Knicks turned around quickly in light of Glen Grunwald being removed from his GM position before the season. Also, the New York Daily News reported that owner James Dolan was upset as the Knicks fell behind big against Minnesota early and that the owner believes the Knicks have the talent to win a championship.
"Expectations are high and they should be," Woodson said. "I am not running from that as the coach. As the owner, Mr. Dolan being an owner of our team, he has every right to voice his opinion. This is his team, we all work for Mr. Dolan and I am happy to be a worker for Mr. Dolan.
"But at the end of the day, I still have a job I have to do. Right now our team is not playing at the level where I expect it should be. That is on me. It is not on Jim. It is on Mike Woodson."
The Knicks picked up the option on Woodson's contract for the 2014-15 season in September.
"Somehow as a coach, I got to get our team playing 48 minutes competing," Woodson said. "The last two games have been non-competitive [early]. And that bothers me. That is a reflection on me from a coaching standpoint and my staff, and somehow we got to get that turned around and get us competing.
"It's early. I am not a panicky coach."
22hMatt Walks, ESPN.com