*By now you already know about the abrupt coaching change affecting the Cleveland Cavaliers. If you haven’t, David Blatt is out and Tyronn Lue is in.
On Saturday, Lue met with the media for the first time as the new head coach of the Cavaliers and he’s already started laying the framework on how he’ll lead the team.
Lue, who played 11 seasons in the NBA before becoming an assistant coach, acknowledged that because Blatt had the team in a good position, he isn’t necessarily looking make any drastic changes.
“I wouldn’t use the term differently because David did a great job,” Lue told reporters Saturday morning. “I’d say better.”
“We went to the NBA Finals with a hurt roster, missing two of our All-Stars, and [Blatt] was still able to carry this team to the NBA Finals,” Lue said. “So my thing is, we just have to do things a little better now, not different.”
So you may be wondering why – if Blatt had the team in a good place – did the team pull the trigger on him? Well, the Cavs went 83-20 with Blatt at the helm, including starting this season 30-11, an improvement upon their 23-18 start in 2014. But three of those 11 losses came against potential NBA Finals opponents San Antonio and Golden State, the latter of which was a 132-98 shellacking.
According to Lue, the humiliating losses to Golden State (at Golden State on Christmas day and at home in Cleveland earlier in the week) prompted the change.
“I think the tough times came when we lost to Golden State, the way they beat us,” Lue told reporters. “In one game you can lose confidence. It wasn’t the way we wanted it to go and we took it hard. It shouldn’t be that way.”
So now it’s Lue’s chance to bring a team together that, despite their success, hasn’t been able to gel as much as they’d like this far into their Big-Three experiment of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love.
“We have to continue to pull together when things get hard and things get tough, we have to continue to pull together.” Lue vowed.
And that includes superstar LeBron James as well.
“I talked to ‘Bron and I told him, ‘I gotta hold you accountable.’ ” Lue said. ” ‘It starts with you first, and if I can hold you accountable in front of the team and doing the right things, then the whole team has to fall in place.’ ”
h/t: MSN News