Mike Woodson

Michael Dean Woodson (born March 24, 1958) is a former American basketball player and coach who last worked as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Clippers of the NBA. He was previously best known as a head coach for the Atlanta Hawks and New York Knicks.

Mike Woodson
Mike Woodson.jpg
Woodson coaching the Hawks in the 2008 NBA playoffs.
New York Knicks
PositionAssistant coach
Personal information
Born (1958-03-24) March 24, 1958 (age 62)
Indianapolis, Indiana
Listed height6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Listed weight195 lb (88 kg)
Career information
High schoolBroad Ripple
(Indianapolis, Indiana)
CollegeIndiana (1976–1980)
NBA draft1980 / Round: 1 / Pick: 12th overall
Selected by the New York Knicks
Playing career1980–1990
PositionGuard / Forward
Number44, 42, 2
Coaching career1996–present
Career history
As player:
19801981New York Knicks
1982New Jersey Nets
19821986Kansas City / Sacramento Kings
19861988Los Angeles Clippers
19881990Houston Rockets
1991Cleveland Cavaliers
As coach:
19961999Milwaukee Bucks (assistant)
19992001Cleveland Cavaliers (assistant)
20012003Philadelphia 76ers (assistant)
20032004Detroit Pistons (assistant)
20042010Atlanta Hawks
2011–2012New York Knicks (assistant)
20122014New York Knicks
20142018Los Angeles Clippers (assistant)
Career highlights and awards
As player:

As assistant coach:

Career NBA statistics
Points10,981 (14.0 ppg)
Rebounds1,838 (2.3 rpg)
Assists1,822 (2.3 apg)
Stats at Basketball-Reference.com

Playing careerEdit

Early life and prep careerEdit

Growing up in Indiana, Woodson felt the Hoosier Hysteria that permeated the state helped prepare him for a career in basketball. He said, "Every yard had courts, little basketball hoops in the yard. If you didn't have it, you had neighbors two doors down that had it. You had parks in every area of town where you could go get a pickup game. Had rec centers where you could go play. It was a place to go learn your craft."[1] He was also able to practice with a large number of talented basketball players in the Indianapolis area, including professionals such as George McGinnis, Roger Brown, and Rick Mount. According to Woodson, playing in Indiana meant "you had to be able to pass, and shoot, and dribble, and play without the basketball, you know, the motion offense. That was Indiana basketball. And Bob Knight is the one who really instilled a lot of the fundamentals and how high school coaches taught their teams."[1]

Indiana UniversityEdit

Woodson elected to play college basketball for Bob Knight and the Indiana University Hoosiers. During one recruiting visit by Knight where Woodson's high school coach, his mother, and his pastor were all present, Knight got into a heated exchange because Woodson's high school coach was not convinced Woodson would fit into Indiana's system.[1] However, according to Woodson, "I wanted to go somewhere where I could play, and where I knew I could get a great education, and my family didn't have to travel far to see me. So it was perfect. And I thought I was playing for the best coach in the country at that time."[1]

In Woodson's junior year, the 1978–79 season, he was the leading scorer on the Hoosier team that won the 1979 NIT Tournament. The 1979–80 Hoosiers, led by Woodson and Isiah Thomas, won the Big Ten championship and advanced to the 1980 Sweet Sixteen. Woodson finished his career at Indiana with 2,062 points.


New York KnicksEdit

Woodson was selected 12th overall by the New York Knicks in the 1980 NBA draft and played in the league from 1980 until 1991. He spent two years in New York, before being traded to the New Jersey Nets.

New Jersey NetsEdit

After playing seven games with the Nets, he was again traded to the Kansas City Kings.

Kansas City/Sacramento KingsEdit

He enjoyed great success with the Kings, leading the team with 18.2 points per contest during a 1983 playoff run. He averaged 12.2 points over his career with the Kings (moving with the team to Sacramento).

End of careerEdit

After success with that franchise, he finished his career by moving between several teams, making contributions in New Jersey, Los Angeles (with the Clippers), Houston, and Cleveland.

Coaching careerEdit

Assistant coach (1996–2004)Edit

Woodson served three seasons as an assistant coach with the Milwaukee Bucks (1996–97 through 1998–99), Cleveland Cavaliers (1999–2000 through 2000–01), Philadelphia 76ers (2001–02 through 2002–03) and Detroit Pistons (2003–04). With the Pistons during the 2003–04 season he helped win an NBA Championship under head coach Larry Brown. Woodson was known for getting the most of defensive players, allowing teams coached by him and Brown to limit opponents to just under 42% shooting.

Atlanta Hawks (2004–2010)Edit

For the 2004–05 season, Woodson took over as a head coach of the Atlanta Hawks, a position previously held by Terry Stotts. During his tenure with the Hawks from 2004–05 through 2009–10 he compiled a 206-286 (.419) record. In 2007–08, he led the Hawks to the playoffs for the first time in eight years. This would be the first of three consecutive playoff appearances. He led the Hawks into the Eastern Conference Semifinals in his last two seasons, compiling an overall Playoff mark of 11–18 (.379). The Hawks increased their win total in each of Woodson's six seasons in Atlanta, going from 13–69 in 2004–05 to 53–29 in 2009–10.

Woodson's 206 career wins are fourth-best in Hawks franchise history, trailing only Richie Guerin (327), Mike Fratello (324) and Hall of Famer Lenny Wilkens (310). However, after the Hawks lost their second round playoff series with the Orlando Magic 0-4 in 2010, general manager Rick Sund announced that the team would not attempt to re-sign Woodson, whose contract expired on May 17, 2010.[2]

New York Knicks (2011–2014)Edit

On August 29, 2011, the New York Knicks announced that Mike Woodson was hired as an assistant coach under head coach Mike D'Antoni. On March 14, 2012, Woodson was named interim head coach after D'Antoni's resignation.[3] In his debut as interim head coach that night, the Knicks crushed the Portland Trail Blazers by a score of 121 to 79. Woodson was named the full-time head coach of the Knicks on May 25, 2012.[4] The Knicks ended the season strong under Mike Woodson, going 18–6 for an overall season record of 36–30, though they would lose 4–1 against the Miami Heat.

In the 2012–13 season the Knicks under Woodson compiled a record of 54–28 and secured the second seed in the Eastern Conference. They reached the Eastern Conference Semifinals, where they lost to the Indiana Pacers in six games.

The Knicks struggled to a 3–13 start in the 2013–2014 season and the team never fully recovered, finishing with a record of 37–45, and missing the playoffs for the first time in four seasons.

On April 21, 2014, Woodson was fired from the New York Knicks head coaching position along with his entire coaching staff after two and a half seasons.[5]

Los Angeles Clippers (2014–2018)Edit

On September 29, 2014, the Los Angeles Clippers officially announced that Woodson had been hired as an assistant coach.[6] He would hold that position with the Clippers throughout the next four years, missing out on the playoffs in only his last season there. Woodson would later announce his resignation from his position with the Clippers on May 15, 2018.[7][8]

On May 22, 2018, a week after his removal from the Clippers, it was rumored that the Phoenix Suns were planning to hire Woodson as an assistant coach under new head coach Igor Kokoškov.[9] However, no announcement by the Suns was made.

Personal lifeEdit

Woodson and his wife Terri have two daughters, Alexis and Mariah, and both are volleyball players.[10]

Head coaching recordEdit

Regular season G Games coached W Games won L Games lost W–L % Win–loss %
Playoffs PG Playoff games PW Playoff wins PL Playoff losses PW–L % Playoff win–loss %
Team Year G W L W–L% Finish PG PW PL PW–L% Result
Atlanta 2004–05 82 13 69 .159 5th in Southeast Missed Playoffs
Atlanta 2005–06 82 26 56 .317 5th in Southeast Missed Playoffs
Atlanta 2006–07 82 30 52 .366 5th in Southeast Missed Playoffs
Atlanta 2007–08 82 37 45 .451 3rd in Southeast 7 3 4 .429 Lost in First Round
Atlanta 2008–09 82 47 35 .580 2nd in Southeast 11 4 7 .364 Lost in Conf. Semifinals
Atlanta 2009–10 82 53 29 .646 2nd in Southeast 11 4 7 .364 Lost in Conf. Semifinals
New York 2011–12 24 18 6 .750 2nd in Atlantic 5 1 4 .200 Lost in First Round
New York 2012–13 82 54 28 .659 1st in Atlantic 12 6 6 .500 Lost in Conf. Semifinals
New York 2013–14 82 37 45 .451 3rd in Atlantic Missed Playoffs
Career 680 315 365 .463 46 18 28 .391


  1. ^ a b c d Serby, Steve (21 March 2012). "Serby's Q & A with ... Mike Woodson". New York Post. Retrieved 8 May 2012.
  2. ^ Bloomberg.com: "Atlanta Hawks Fire Coach Mike Woodson After NBA Playoff Sweep by Orlando" Archived 2014-04-22 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved May 14, 2010
  3. ^ Yahoo! Sports "Mike D’Antoni resigns as Knicks coach" Retrieved March 12, 2012.
  4. ^ ESPN New York "Knicks extend coach Mike Woodson" Retrieved May 25, 2012.
  5. ^ ESPN "Knicks Fire Entire Coaching Staff" Retrieved April 21, 2014.
  6. ^ ESPN [1] Retrieved September 29, 2014.
  7. ^ https://twitter.com/wojespn/status/996389296608292866
  8. ^ http://arizonasports.com/story/1535639/suns-adding-former-knicks-coach-mike-woodson-to-igor-kokoskovs-staff/
  9. ^ "Suns To Hire Mike Woodson As Assistant Coach". basketball.realgm.com. May 22, 2018.
  10. ^ NBA Coaching Bio

External linksEdit