Knicks

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Newsday's Al Iannazzone takes you inside the Knicks.

Mike Woodson said letting Jeremy Lin go wasn't a hard call

Knicks interim head coach Mike Woodson talks with

Knicks interim head coach Mike Woodson talks with Jeremy Lin during the game against the Portland Trailblazers. (March 14, 2012) (Credit: Getty Images)

HOUSTON -- Mike Woodson addressed the Knicks’ decision not to match Jeremy Lin’s contract offer from the Rockets for the first time Friday, and said it wasn’t a hard call.

“That’s a business decision,” Woodson said after the morning shootaround. “I don’t think it was difficult. We just decided to go in a different direction, based on the guys I thought I liked in terms of Raymond [Felton], Jason [Kidd] and Pablo [Prigioni].

“They’ve been great for us. We got to continue to push them and coach them to continue to play at a high level to help us win.”

Friday night, the Knicks will play Lin for the first time this season.

Lin had a terrific run for the Knicks last year, but they opted not to match the Rockets’ offer of three years and $25.1 million that included a $14.9 million payment in Year 3.

In training camp, Tyson Chandler said that the point guards the Knicks have now are better equipped to run this veteran team than the still unproven Lin was. Woodson echoed those thoughts Friday morning.

“We’re happy with the three guys we brought in, without a doubt,” he said. “Absolutely. Very happy. I am.”

Woodson said he doesn’t expect any of his players to have extra motivation for Friday night’s game.

“We’re looking at a road game where it’s tough to win out on the road, where we got to come in here and play a perfect game to win,” he said. “That’s just the nature of being out on the road because teams play well at home. This will be a wonderful trip for us if we come out of here with a win, going two of three. Any time you can do that out on the road it’s very successful.”
 

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