Watching last night’s all-too-familiar 4th quarter Knick demise, a recurring theme was on full display.
Somewhere along the way between guaranteed multi-million dollar contracts and suspect coaching, the art of boxing out has been completely lost. At least it for these seventh-seeded Knicks it has.
Case-in-point: With the Knicks and Pistons tied at 95 points apiece with just under two minutes to go, Detroit’s Will Bynum missed a layup attempt that should have been rebounded by any of the three New York defenders in the general vicinity.
The only problem was that those Knicks — most notably Amar’e Stoudemire — were busy watching Bynum’s shot fly through the air instead of putting a body on an opposing player.
Of course, it was no surprise when former Knick Chris Wilcox emphatically slammed home what would prove to be the game-winning bucket. Making matters worse, on the very next Detroit possession, Wilcox was again left alone, this time keeping a missed shot alive by tipping the ball to teammate Tayshaun Prince.
Maybe coach Mike D’Antoni should scrap the two-hour defensive-minded practices and instead institute some box-out drills. He might even want to bring in Charles Oakley, who knows a thing or two about rebounding.
Who knows, with some better rebounding — and a bit of luck — perhaps the Knicks can pull off a Round-One upset. And give D’Antoni some much needed job security.
Associated Press photo of Charles Oakley