Knicks 'zzone

Newsday's Al Iannazzone takes you inside the Knicks.

Patrick Ewing will coach against Knicks tonight

Knicks legend Patrick Ewing salutes the fans in

(Credit: Getty)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Patrick Ewing has wanted the opportunity to coach a team, but he didn’t want his first time to be this way or against his old team.

Ewing will make his NBA head coaching debut Friday night when the Knicks play the Bobcats. Charlotte head coach Steve Clifford went to the hospital Thursday night after not feeling well and is undergoing further tests.

Clifford suffered...

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Mike Woodson plans to start big again

Andrea Bargnani drives against the Chicago Bulls' Carlos

(Credit: Getty)

Mike Woodson seems committed with starting the big lineup – for now.

Woodson said he probably would stick with the five that opened last night against Minnesota: Raymond Felton, Iman Shumpert, Tyson Chandler, Andrea Bargnani and Carmelo Anthony tomorrow against the Bobcats.

The Knicks fell behind 40-19 at the end of the first quarter, but Woodson said he doesn’t think it’s because of...

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Takeaways from latest Knicks' loss

Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. shoots over Minnesota

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

The Knicks are below .500 for the first time since March 2012. But it’s only three games into the season, so it’s not time to panic. Still there are some things the Knicks need to clean up.

Some takeaways from Sunday night’s 109-100 loss to the Timberwolves:

Bad offense led to bad defense:

The Knicks didn’t take care of the basketball and didn’t move the ball enough on offense....

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Knicks-Nets games are spread out this year

Tyson Chandler of the Knicks tries to shoot

(Credit: David Pokress)

Spreading out the Knicks-Nets games should lead to some intense and potentially important late-season meetings, unlike last season, when they played three times in 24 days and were done with each other on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

The three in 24 included the makeup of the game postponed because of superstorm Sandy.

They play Dec. 5, on MLK Day and twice in April, including the next-to-last...

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Fast breaks: New violations, Bogans and Q-Rich, Lakers

Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant smiles during

(Credit: AP)

- The new delay-of-game infraction that the NBA hopes speeds up the game has been slowing it down. If a player touches the ball after a made basket by his team, it’s a violation now. Players often are under the basket or run in for rebounds and instinctively catch or grab the ball as it comes through the net and give it to the ref. They can’t do that anymore.

- The real winners of the offseason...

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Nine first-time head coaches in NBA

Jason Kidd talks with the media following practice

(Credit: Joe Epstein)

A record nine first-time head coaches are guiding NBA teams this season, according to the Elias Sports Bureau: Jason Kidd (Nets), Mike Budenholzer (Hawks), Steve Clifford (Bobcats), Brian Shaw (Nuggets), Michael Malone (Kings), Jeff Hornacek (Suns), Brett Brown (76ers), Brad Stevens (Celtics) and David Joerger (Grizzlies).

Kidd, Joerger and Shaw face the most pressure. Some predict the Nets...

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Tyson Chandler needs help

Tyson Chandler, left, questions referee Monty McCutchen after

(Credit: AP)

The Knicks’ lack of a post presence besides Tyson Chandler is a glaring weakness that wasn’t really addressed by former GM Glen Grunwald and hasn’t yet by new president and GM Steve Mills.

Despite being a 7-footer, Andrea Bargnani is a finesse offensive player who doesn’t defend or rebound well. He has three rebounds in two games.

Kenyon Martin is on a minutes restriction because of...

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Carmelo Anthony contract situation won't distract Knicks

Carmelo Anthony celebrates at the buzzer after defeating

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Carmelo Anthony says he wants to be a free agent. He says he wants to be pursued and recruited similar to the way LeBron James was in 2010. But he also keeps giving every indication that he’s staying with the Knicks.

Just this past week, in response to criticism from TNT analysts Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith, Anthony said he has “a big Rolodex’’ and plans to use it to recruit players to...

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A new season and a new lineup

Carmelo Anthony and Raymond Felton of the Knicks

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

On the eve of the regular-season opener, Mike Woodson sounds as if he’s ready to change the starting lineup he used most of preseason.

Andrea Bargnani appears out of the starting five and Carmelo Anthony, who had played his more natural small forward during the preseason, is expected to slide back to power forward when the Knicks open up tomorrow against the Bucks.

“I didn’t expect it,”...

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Knicks pick up Iman Shumpert's option

Iman Shumpert brings the ball upcourt during the

(Credit: Getty)

The Knicks picked up the fourth-year option on Iman Shumpert’s deal. The shooting guard is now under contract through the 2014-15 season.

Shumpert is on his rookie deal, so exercising the $2.6 million option for next season was a formality. It just had to be done by Halloween.

The Knicks can submit a qualifying offer after Shumpert’s fourth season, which would make him a restricted free...

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