In a move that should not drastically change the state of New York, the Knicks have released forward Metta World Peace and point guard Beno Udrih. The move will make both free agents—which means any team can sign either—as no team is expected to claim them off waivers.
In separate statements, Knicks president Steve Mills and head coach Mike Woodson admitted that the pair of signings was a failed experiment for the floundering franchise, which has gone from East playoff contenders last year to lottery-bound at this point of the 2013-2014 regular season.
“We are disappointed that it did not work out for Beno and Metta here in New York,” said Mills. “We thank them for their contributions this season and wish them well.”
New York’s head coach, who himself is involved in a lot of rumors that he is on his way out of the Big Apple agreed with Mills.
“They weren’t in the rotation, and I’m not going to linger on it,” said Woodson. “We’re buying them out, and as a coach when guys work for me I wish them nothing but the best when they move on. And we’re going to move on.”
The Knicks are 21-35 entering a tough match-up with the visiting Dallas Mavericks on Monday. They are 5.5 games off the 8th seed in the weak Eastern Conference.
The Knicks signed World Peace to a two-year $3.3 million deal despite knee issues with the Los Angeles Lakers, which used the amnesty provision on the volatile forward. Still, the 15-year veteran can be a serviceable player and is reportedly interested in signing with contenders Miami Heat, San Antonio Spurs or Oklahoma City Thunder.
Udrih was the third point guard behind Raymond Felton and Pablo Prigioni and has never earned consistent playing time which has prompted him to demand for a trade early in January 2014.
World Peace averaged 4.8 points and 2.0 rebounds in 13.4 minutes and Udrih logged in 5.6 points and 3.5 assists in 19.0 minutes for the Knicks.