Good Morning
Good Morning

J.R. Smith in a shooting slump

Raymond Felton shoots a foul shot during a

Raymond Felton shoots a foul shot during a game against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Madison Square Garden. (Dec. 23, 2012) Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

PHILADELPHIA -- J.R. Smith has hit some big shots for the Knicks this season, but Saturday night, he couldn't hit anything.

Smith, the team's second-leading scorer, was 0-for-8 from the field and held without a point in the Knicks' 97-80 loss to the 76ers. "I couldn't throw it in the ocean," he said.

Mike Woodson said he's concerned because Smith has been struggling with his shot lately. Smith said he's "probably thinking too much." Although he hit a huge three-pointer late in Thursday's win in Boston, he's 3-for-24 in the last two games and 23-for-86 in his last six.

"Major concern," Woodson said. "J.R. is a big part of what we do on both ends of the floor. He didn't even make a shot. We got to program him back to playing like he'd been playing and get him playing at a high level, because we're going to need it."

Kidd's minutesJason Kidd, who will be 40 in March, can get a little breather now that Raymond Felton is back. Kidd won't complain about his minutes, but Woodson wants to keep him sharp for the playoffs and will try to limit his minutes to about 20 to 25. "At the most," he said, "and those minutes pretty much coming in the third and fourth quarter." Kidd said that "sounds very good."

Two years ago, the Mavericks gave Kidd a week off to rest him for the postseason. This past week, he said he wouldn't object to that. "I'll do whatever he wants to do," Woodson said. "That's just how much I value what he says and how he's feeling. He's not going to say that if it weren't beneficial to him and helping our team. Whatever he wants to do, I'm going to do."

Meanwhile, the upside of Felton's having missed 4½ weeks: The bone bruises on both of his hands have had time to heal. "I feel like a new man," he said.

Chris not crossChris Copeland handled Woodson's statement that he isn't practicing hard or committing to defense enough, showing maturity and professionalism. He respects Woodson and believes some of it was motivational.

"I'm a rookie," said Copeland, 28. "I have a lot to learn and he's always on me about getting better. That's important. It's still my first year. I still have a lot to learn, for sure.

"He's a great coach. He's been around the game forever; he knows what he's talking about. He's trying to push me in different ways."

Collins falls ill76ers coach Doug Collins left the bench in the third quarter and was treated by the team doctors for a blocked nasal passage and a sinus infection. He didn't return. Michael Curry coached the end of the game.

Buzzer-beatersMarcus Camby (strained left plantar fascia) is out of his walking boot but said he's about two to three weeks away from running.

New York Sports