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Point Forward

Report: Knicks' Beno Udrih requests trade

(Ron Turenne/Getty Images)Beno Udrih (right) is averaging 5.9 points and 3.7 assists for the Knicks. (Ron Turenne/Getty Images)

Knicks reserve point guard Beno Udrih has reportedly requested a trade.

ESPNNewYork.com reported Monday that Udrih "communicated his wishes to the Knicks in recent days" and that New York's management would attempt to oblige.

Udrih, 31, is averaging 5.9 points and 3.7 assists in 19.9 minutes per game for New York this season. He has started 12 times for the Knicks this season as Raymond Felton has missed time due to injury. Fellow back-up Pablo Prigioni has also missed time due to injuries.

The Knicks are in the middle of a frustrating season, falling to 15-26 after a blowout loss to the crosstown Nets on Monday, and Udrih's campaign has been full of intrigue, including some pointed words from coach Mike Woodson.

Back in November, Udrih was torched off the dribble by Wizards guard Bradley Beal for a game-winning lay-up, even though New York had a foul to give.

"We knew we had a foul to give but Beno opened the floodgates. ... It happened so fast," Woodson said afterwards, according to CSNWashington.com. "He was thinking the help was there but it wasn't there, so he couldn't even reach to grab the guy to take the foul. We all knew we had a foul to give but we didn't use it and I have to take the timeout."

Then, on Christmas, Udrih shot just 1-for-6 from the field. During the game, he could be seen rolling his short-sleeve jersey up over his shoulder, and afterwards he blamed the Christmas Day uniform for his poor shooting.

“Personally it bothered me and my shot,” Udrih said, according to the Wall Street Journal. “On a normal shot, I’m used to getting my shoulder and elbow up [unhindered]. That was my personal feeling. I don’t know how anyone else was feeling. I know Timmy [Hardaway] was saying he wore it in college before. I never did it before.”

That same night, Udrih expressed frustration at being treated as a scapegoat.

“It’s easy to point fingers when the team loses. But it comes down to we are a team, we lose together,” he said, according to the New York Daily News. “No matter who makes a mistake or who doesn’t, it’s still a team loss. So I think all of this stuff should be kept out of the media and not call certain people out.”

New York lost to Houston on Jan. 3 when J.R. Smith took an ill-advised three-pointer with the score tied and the shot clock turned off. Smith said afterwards that he wasn't aware of the time/score situation and that the play was "bad basketball IQ" on his part, but Woodson blamed Udrih for passing the ball to Smith.

“The bottom line is you look at his shot, but did Beno have to throw him the ball?” Woodson asked, according to the Daily News. “You gotta look at that.”

Woodson later tried to clarify that he "wasn't pointing the finger at Beno" but added that Udrih "probably should have held the ball" rather than pass to Smith.

Udrih, a 10-year veteran, signed a one-year, minimum salary contract with the Knicks during the offseason. He is trade-eligible in advance of the Feb. 20 trade deadline. His contract -- small in salary, no future cash -- makes him easy to move, but his play hasn't exactly wowed this season and he's unlikely to garner an asset of any significance in a deal.

The Slovenian guard currently holds a minus-9.5 net rating, among the worst marks in New York's rotation, and the team's defensive efficiency drops from 104 when he's off the court to an abominable 110.5 when he's on the court. New York marks Udrih's fourth team since 2011, as he bounced around from the Kings to the Bucks to the Magic during the previous three seasons.

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