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D’Antoni gets so-so response in NY return
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On December 13, 2012 @ 9:00 pm In All,Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
NEW YORK – Los Angeles Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni was introduced to a some boos mixed with apathy at Madison Square Garden Thursday night.
On Wednesday, his visit was a little more uplifting, getting to spend some time at his home in New York’s Westchester County with his wife, Laurel, and son, Mike D’Antoni Jr., where they still live.
“We stayed in all night. That was the first time I’ve seen them in about a month. I had a lot of catching up,” said D’Antoni who became the Lakers’ coach on Nov. 9, after the team fired Mike Brown five games into the season.
D’Antoni also had what anyone under the weather (knee replacement surgery in early November) and struggling at their job (4-8 since taking over the Lakers) needs – a home-cooked comfort food: pasta with tomatoes and mozzarella.
“That’s all we know how to do,” said D’Antoni, an Italian who spent several years playing professional basketball in Italy.
On Thursday at the Lakers’ late morning shootaround prior to his first game against his former team, D’Antoni said he didn’t know what kind of reception he would get hear from Knicks fans.
“I don’t know,” he said.
D’Antoni tried to downplay the emotions of playing against the Knicks.
“I’m too old for that,” he said. “I’ll enjoy going to the Garden because that’s always special because there’ll be an energy there. But I’m with the Lakers.”
That doesn’t mean D’Antoni is devoid of emotion.
“You get emotionally attached to any team you’re at,” he said. “There’s a lot of players still there. Raymond (Felton), (Tyson) Chandler and ‘Melo (Anthony) and all these guys you’ve coached. So it’ll be fun to see them, but at the same time I’m worried about what we do.”
D’Antoni spent much of the interview with reporters defending his time with the Knicks. He had a 121-167 record in three-plus seasons in New York, but his tenure ended when he resigned. It became apparent to D’Antoni and the Knicks front office that he wasn’t a good fit for the team the Knicks were becoming.
In a twist, Knicks coach Mike Woodson, the guy D’Antoni hired as … [For more on Mike D'Antoni gets so-so response to his return to NY, click here.]
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