Knicks wear all black ahead of Game 5 to mimic funeral for Celtics.
New York Knicks coach Mike Woodson said he was “upset” after learning that his team wore all black on Wednesday ahead of Game 5 against the Boston Celtics, to mimic a funeral for their rivals.
The Knicks went on to lose at the Garden as Boston reduce their deficit to just one game as they prepare for Game 6 back at home.
However, his team’s antics haven’t left Woodson all too pleased, as he believes they should be fully focused on matters on the court rather than those off it.
“I’m a little upset about that, and I’ve addressed that,” he told reporters after practice on Tuesday according to ESPN.
“Things like that have just got to be, just kept outside the game and just concentrate on playing basketball,” he added.
The Celtics sealed a 92-86 win over the Knicks to force a Game 6, and despite the return of Sixth Man of the Year J.R. Smith, New York are still searching to end the series and secure their first playoff series win since 2000.
Woodson went on to say that he did not know about his team’s plan prior to the game, but if he had done he would have prevented them from doing so.
Point guard Raymond Felton said on ESPN New York Radio that he was not aware that the all black clothing signified a funeral, but instead he believed it was merely a team bonding exercise.
However, Tyson Chandler was a little more forthcoming and accepting, stating that it was something he used to do with the Dallas Mavericks en route to their NBA title in 2011.
“It’s nothing against the Celtics. It’s something we were doing as a team. It wasn’t meant to offend anybody or anything like that. It was meant to be to motivate guys in the locker room,” he said.
The stunt appeared to motivate Boston who will again have to avoid early elimination with a win at the TD Garden on Friday night. No team has ever come back from a 3-0 deficit in the history of the NBA Playoffs, and Woodson will be hoping they can extend that run by concentrating on the task at hand.