Multiple reports have indicated that Madison Square Garden is ready to lock up Woodson on a multi-year deal to keep him as head coach. His 18-6 record to finish the season and the endorsement of the team's stars, mainly Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler, are more than enough to cinch it for him.
Woodson denied a report that he already met with Garden chairman James Dolan for preliminary discussions about his future and, in the midst of a first-round playoff series, deflected questions about his status as interim coach. "All of that will take care of itself when the time comes, if that may be," he said.
It now becomes a focus as the Knicks were eliminated by Miami in Game 5 on Wednesday night with a 106-94 defeat. Though the injury-ravaged Knicks were completely overwhelmed by the Heat in this series, Woodson appears to have done just enough to get the job.
His main competition was Phil Jackson, the man with 11 championship rings and a link to the Knicks' glory days as a member of the 1970 and '73 championship teams. But at 70 years old and coming off knee replacement surgery, Jackson might not be the right candidate anymore. It remains to be seen if he is completely eliminated from contention for the job, but all indications are that it's Woodson's to have.
Carmelo Anthony, who struggled under Mike D'Antoni but emerged after Woodson took over, is all for it.
"That would be a great thing," Anthony said. "To know what he did, taking over the coaching position in the short time he was here, the success that we had, the success that he had, if they decide to bring him back next year, we welcome that with open arms and we support that."
It would be a major step toward some much-needed stability going into next season, where the head coach would be established, the team's core intact and a full training camp to get everyone on the same page. This team hasn't gone through an entire season with the same coach and core players in five years.