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Knicks need to take a hard look at themselves in wake of loss to Kings

Carmelo Anthony of the Knicks looks on against

Carmelo Anthony of the Knicks looks on against the Sacramento Kings at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014. Credit: Jim McIsaac

The look on Carmelo Anthony's face was one he's worn plenty of times this season. It was somewhere between frustration, disappointment and despair.

Tyson Chandler had a similar look. He shook his head a few times, answered a couple of questions and seemed as if he was out of words to explain how far the Knicks have sunk after their embarrassing home loss to the Sacramento Kings (18-35) in overtime Wednesday night.

"It's very disappointing, to be quite honest with you," Chandler said.

The Knicks are 20-32 at the All-Star break after winning 54 games last season. They would need to finish 30-0 to win 50 this year.

There continues to be speculation about Mike Woodson's job security. And with next Thursday's NBA trade deadline nearing, there could be several Knicks on the move if team officials can find appealing deals.

Last year at this time, Anthony said the Knicks were primed for a title run and didn't need to make any trades. Now he really doesn't have an answer.

"I don't know," Anthony said after the loss to Sacramento. "I don't want to go down that path at this point. Whatever they are thinking, they are thinking. If they do something, they do it, it is up to them. It is out of my hands and we keep it like that."

Anthony took most of the blame for Mike D'Antoni's departure and some heat for Jeremy Lin's. Anthony doesn't want it to appear he influenced any front-office decisions if Woodson is dismissed or trades are made.

But anything the Knicks do will have Anthony in mind.

He will be a free agent July 1. If the Knicks don't string enough wins together to make the playoffs -- and perhaps win at least a round -- there's no guarantee Anthony returns.

"Everybody's got to play better," Woodson said before Wednesday's game. "I got to coach better. It's just that simple. We all got to do our part to get where we need to go."

Anthony, the Knicks' lone representative in Sunday's All-Star Game in New Orleans, will spend a few days with some influential friends, including Kobe Bryant, Chris Paul and LeBron James. There could be discussions about teaming up or putting him in position to play for a championship.

Anthony isn't in that position now, and unless the Knicks can make some major changes before July 1 they may not be when it's time for him to make a decision.

The Knicks are looking for an upgrade at point guard and some additional size. They also would like to get salary-cap relief and draft picks for future deals.

This season has been wearing on Anthony, who believed the Knicks would contend. They have the ninth-worst record in the league. Anthony is having another big season statistically, but he hasn't performed well down the stretch in games. That could be a result of fatigue from logging so many minutes or having to carry the Knicks every game.

Anthony missed a possible game-winning shot in regulation against the Kings and was 0-for-5 in overtime after playing the entire second half. That contributed to Anthony feeling down before heading to New Orleans.

"Mentally, yeah," Anthony said. "Just knowing how important this game was for us to just start the break off and get this win on our home court and kind of go into the break with a win . . . but once I get down there and see friends and see family, kind of not think about this for a couple of days, maybe it will change."

It certainly appears something has to change for his team.

The Dolan family owns controlling interests in the Knicks, Madison Square

Garden and Cablevision. Cablevision owns Newsday.


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