CHICAGO – Following another penalty shootout that knocked them down to 2-9, New York Knicks players continue to support coach David Fizdale, despite his precarious job status.
With team president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry watching Tuesday at the United Center, New York fell 1
With the defeat, the Knicks tied the franchise record for the most losses in 11 games.
Even before a terrifying press conference following the loss of a penalty shootout by Cleveland on Sunday, Mills began to determine the internal basis for Fizdale's eventual dismissal, ESPN's Adrian Voinarovsky and Malika Andrews announced Monday.
Fizdale didn't seem stunned by the speculation during Tuesday's shooting, telling reporters: "It's always a media warrior in New York, so for everyone else, it's a big deal, but for us it's a normal environment. So, our boys are focused, they are connected. "
Despite their disappointment after losing to Chicago – one in which they turned the ball over 18 times and were outscored 52-46 in combat – the Knicks players were still unwavering in their support of the second-year coach.
"We have 9-10 new guys? We have 10 guys who haven't played together at all, and me who haven't played in the league yet," said rookie J. J. Barrett. "You will have some challenges, but you have to keep pushing, keep pushing through everything. That's all I can really say. You just have to stay together.
" He faces the challenge. We believe in "We remain together, and as we said, we are entirely with him, and we will just continue to fight together."
"Just play hard for him, go out and give it your best," said Bonnie Ortiz. "We can not control wins and losses, but we can control the level of effort and just go out there and play replacement and intensity. So even though the shots didn't fall for us tonight and Kobe White went crazy in the fourth quarter, I think we played hard for the coach and that's all we want. "
The Knicks have started the season 2-9 seven times, with four of those cases coming in the last 20 seasons, according to ESPN Stats & Information research
players are not yet ready to give up – from their coach or team –
"Get out there and play hard for him. Get out there and try to win," said Taj Gibson, who finished with 17 points and five boards on Tuesday. "You make profits, the noise stops and that's the main focus right now is trying to get wins.
"He's trying to pull us to victory on different ways and at the same time we are getting closer, "he added." We just have to do a lot better, and it's not just him, it's us as well. as of late. "