The Cleveland Cavaliers had some major news come out today about where this franchise is headed for the upcoming 2014-2015 NBA season. Owner Dan Gilbert announced that interim general manager David Griffin will be retained and will be the team’s permanent GM. While head coach Mike Brown has been let go. After returning to the Cavaliers for just one season in which the Cavs went 33-49; Gilbert decided to relieve Brown of his duties with four-years remaining on his contract. With half the fans happy about the decision to move on from Brown, others are not pleased with the Cavs once again starting over. Here is a look at possible candidates for the Cavs head coaching position.
Mark Jackson- Former coach of the Golden State Warriors who has a record of 121-109, and led the Warriors to the playoffs in two of his three seasons as their head coach. Jackson who had no prior coaching experience before taking the Warriors job back in 2011 played 17-years in the NBA and had a seven-year broadcasting career. New Cavs GM Griffin spent 17 seasons in the Phoenix Suns organization before coming to the Cavaliers franchise in 2010. Griffin’s style is said to be a man who likes an uptempo offense with a team that likes to shoot three-pointers. This past season Jackson’s Warriors’ were sixth in the league at three-pointers attempted per game with 24.8. The Warriors’ were fourth in the league in three point percentage with 38%. Along with being in the top ten for points scored per game with 104.3. While Jackson’s exit from the Warriors still seems to be a mystery the likelihood of him being a possible candidate for the Cavaliers head coaching spot seems very realistic.
Alvin Gentry- Currently an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Clippers under Doc Rivers; Gentry has plenty of NBA head coaching experience that could be exactly what a young team like the Cavs need. Gentry has a record of 335-370, but in his final coaching stint with the Phoenix Suns from 2008-2013 he went 158-136. During his first full year as Suns’ head coach Gentry had the Suns as the highest scoring team in the league with 110.2 points per game. Also during the 2009-2010 season the Suns’ were sixth in three-pointers attempted with 21.6 per game and first in three-point percentage at 41.2%. The overall talent of players dropped off during Gentry’s coaching career with the Suns he still liked to run an uptempo, three point shooting team that new GM Griffin is in favor of.
Tyronn Lue- Yes; another Los Angeles Clippers assistant is in the mix to become the Cavaliers next head coach. Lue is rumored to be meeting with the Cavaliers sometime this week, and could just very well be the next coach. Lue who played in the NBA from 1998-2009, and has been an assistant under Doc Rivers since 2009. Lue has never been an NBA head coach or even a head coach at any level, but he has NBA playing experience along with learning under of the best coaches in the game today for the past six seasons. Lue was a role player off the bench, but was apart of two NBA championship teams with the Los Angeles Lakers in the early 2000s. While fans might consider him a long shot from being the next head coach I wouldn’t be surprised if he would get more than one interview for the job.
These are just three possible candidates that could in the end be the next head coach of the Cavaliers. While plenty of other candidates will be mentioned keep in mind these three names as one that you will hear talked about during the entire duration of the head coaching search. With this being Griffin’s possible one and only time at being a GM in the NBA I look for him to make sure he gets the perfect man for the job. With that being said the man for this job I believe should be Alvin Gentry. He has tons of coaching history to work off of, and has time to learn from his past mistakes during his time under Doc Rivers. Gentry runs a uptempo style of basketball that would fit well with a team with Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters, and the potential first overall pick in the 2014 draft.
No matter what the eventual move is that Griffin makes his stamp on the franchise will be made this offseason, and will be felt throughout this team and the city of Cleveland for the next few seasons.