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Knicks coach Woodson chooses Slava Kravstov to shoot free throws after Markieff Morris is ejected (VIDEO)

Jan 14, 2014, 10:45 AM EDT

NEW YORK – Entertaining moment early in the second quarter on Monday during the Knicks’ 98-96 overtime win over the Suns.

Markieff Morris received his second technical foul of the game for shoving J.R. Smith following an inadvertent shot to the face he received while attempting a shot.

A second technical is an automatic ejection, and since Morris was supposed to head to the line for two free throws, we got to witness a rare occurrence. NBA rules state that if the player shooting the free throws can’t, for whatever reason (including injury), then the opposing team’s head coach gets to choose any player on the active roster to complete the task.

Mike Woodson seemed to be fairly excited about getting to do this, and the crowd in attendance at Madison Square Garden shared in his glee. Woodson took his time before settling on Slava Kravstov, who has played the least minutes for the Suns this season, and was tied with the similarly seldom-used Alex Len for lowest free throw percentage on the team, having made two of his four attempts on the season.

The fans cheered wildly as Kravstov entered the game, and were just as loud in expressing their disappointment when the first free throw bounced around the rim before it eventually dropped through. The second one was missed just as Woodson had hoped, however, and the loud cheering immediately resumed.

Kravstov was subbed out after a stoppage on the ensuing possession, and received a huge round of applause as he headed to the bench.

“I don’t think I’ve ever done that as a head coach,” Woodson said afterward. “I think it’s the first time I’ve done that, when a guy got ejected and I had to pick a player.”

Woodson wasn’t exactly up to speed on the free throw percentages of the players at the end of his opponent’s bench, so he deferred to his assistants to make that decision.

“I turned to my staff, they keep me abreast on who (I should choose),” he said. “And the kid makes one out of the two, so it worked to our advantage a little bit.”

In a game that went to overtime before the Knicks eventually won by two points, every advantage helps.

  1. 950003cups - Jan 14, 2014 at 10:58 AM

    I’ve never seen something like that. Lol

  2. timb12 - Jan 14, 2014 at 11:51 AM

    Poor guy. He looked like he hated every minute of those free throws!

  3. pbtunpaidwriter - Jan 14, 2014 at 12:31 PM

    Last year the Lakers were playing some team and they chose Earl Clark from the Lakers bench.

    He calmly sank both, earned more playing time and played well. That then earned him a contract with the Cavs and is now contributing to the mess that is the Cavs.

    • asimonetti88 - Jan 14, 2014 at 1:16 PM

      So you’re saying the Cavs will sign Slava Kravstov this offseason

      • pbtunpaidwriter - Jan 14, 2014 at 1:40 PM

        1. I never said that.
        2. It would make sense for you to assume this if he made both and could crack the rotation which he definitely won’t.

        You usually make sense. Some people here need courses in logic.

      • asimonetti88 - Jan 14, 2014 at 6:44 PM

        I see my sarcasm font is broken

  4. sisisisisisisi - Jan 14, 2014 at 12:46 PM

    Slava Kravstov may have just caused the Knicks the lottery pick

  5. knicksmets - Jan 14, 2014 at 4:37 PM

    I was at game it was pretty funny. I feel bad for him having to be called out for that and to not even get any run. Him and Lens didn’t really play. I’m surprised that there are rules for these type of things.

  6. frank433 - Jan 14, 2014 at 10:35 PM

    He made his season debut last year with the Pistons in a similar fashion. Rodney Stuckey had a tooth knocked out and missed the rest of the game and he came in to hit 1 of 2 free throws in relief. He went back to the bench after 15 seconds in the game, but was back in for garbage time in a blow out win.

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