Mike Woodson’s plan to fix Knicks’ pick-and-roll defense

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The Knicks are a lousy defensive team, but they’re especially bad at defending the pick-and-roll.

New York ranks 29th in points allowed per play finished by a pick-and-roll ball-hander and 30th in points allowed per play finished by a pick-and-roll screener, according MySynergySports.

Wisely, because this isn’t working, Knicks coach Knicks coach Mike Woodson wants to change how his team defends pick-and-rolls.

Woodson, via Ian Begley of ESPN:

“I don’t want to switch,” Woodson said after Thursday’s practice. “I’ve always wanted to put the emphasis on our perimeter guys to guard perimeter players. Bigs are supposed to guard bigs and when there’s some breakdowns there is supposed to be help. It’s a team defense.

Switching on pick-and-rolls works well – if you have the players to make the scheme work. It requires guards with size and bigs with mobility. New York actually has a few players who can do it, at least somewhat: Iman Shumpert, Tim Hardaway Jr., Metta World Peace and Tyson Chandler.

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But switching requires both defenders being capable of executing. The Knicks don’t have enough players who can to do it often.

Really, the Knicks don’t have enough players who defend well in any scheme. I’m not sure how Woodson plans to tackle that one.