New York Knicks head man Mike D'Antoni is not a bad coach. Not by any means. He can get your team to the playoffs, rack up plenty of wins in the regular season, and plays an exciting style of basketball. His only problem is that he's a bad late game coach.

Watching the Knicks melt down in the first two games in the Eastern Conference playoffs against the Boston Celtics reminded me of when he was coaching the Phoenix Suns. Suns fans probably know what I'm talking about and were probably having flashbacks watching the Knicks give away the first two games to the Celtics.

For all the flash the Suns had, they constantly found ways to lose to the Spurs, among others, in the playoffs. The Suns were always there in the end but found ways to lose it. Credit D'Antoni for that. He wasn't the greatest late game tactician. That flaw reared it's ugly head in games 1 and 2.

In game 1 Amare' Stoudamire was punishing Kevin Garnett in the fourth quarter, but for some reason he didn't see the ball down the stretch. Now if Stoudamire is the hot hand you keep going to it, don't you? I know I would, but I'm only a Playstation coach so how would I know. All plays should've been ran through Stoudamire, save for Toney Douglas' three pointer. Then you let Carmelo Anthony settle for a 30 footer for the last shot. Take your chances for overtime. I didn't watch much of game 2, but I saw enough to come to the realization that D'Antoni doesn't make the best choices late in the game.

The Knocks will be a force in the Eastern Conference in the years to come, whether D'Antoni will be there to see it through I don't know. I'm not calling for his job, but the Knicks are destined to become the new age version of the 1980's Milwaukee Bucks. Win a lot of games, but won't win big in the playoffs.     
By Chris Edwards


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