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CavsHistory » 2010 » May

Cleveland Cavaliers Fire Coach Mike Brown After Five Seasons (via Windhorst)

via Windhorst at the the PD

The most successful coach in Cavaliers history is now a former coach.

In a move expected since the team lost three consecutive games to be upset by the Boston Celtics in the conference semifinals, the Cavs fired coach Mike Brown on Sunday according to a league source. The news was first reported by ESPN.

It ended his run as the franchise’s 17th coach after five seasons in which he broke numerous team records and was named the NBA’s 2008-09 Coach of the Year.

The team announced the firing this morning. The reason the act had to be done before the end of the weekend was there was a clause in Brown’s contract, an extension signed in 2007, that guaranteed him about half of his salary for next season of $4 million if he was let go within 10 days of the end of this season.

Cavs majority owner Dan Gilbert, who hand picked Brown and gave him his first head coaching job after an extensive coaching search in 2005, is believed to have been the driving force behind the decision. Though it followed more than a week of intensive meetings in which the merits and drawbacks of a coaching changed were deeply discussed.

Some Cavs’ players, including LeBron James, also seemed to lose patience with Brown after some of his adjustments and rotations didn’t work against the Celtics in the playoffs.

 

Brown (via John Kuntz | The Plain Dealer)

However, James is not believed to have made a personal push with management for a coaching change. He left it to the front office to make the final decision.

 

Brown seemed to struggle with his rotations after having to incorporate Shaquille O’Neal back into the team in the playoffs after O’Neal missed the final six weeks of the season. He started a lineup in the first game of the playoffs that he hadn’t used all season and the turbulence from multiple players changing roles appeared to upset the balance of the team.

Those problems plus, according to sources, some disagreement over some game plans for playoff games with some of the team leaders eventually led to some discord in the locker room during the Celtics series.

The day Brown was hired, June 2, 2005, he promised he would make the Cavs a defense-based team. It was a pledge he would back up, using defense to win 100 regular games and four playoff series in just his first two seasons.

After some improvement in his first season, Brown’s help-and-recover defensive system started to take hold. In the 2006-07 season, the Cavs allowed just 92 points a game in the regular season and just 86 points a game in the playoffs as the Cavs reached their first-ever Finals.

When the Cavs won a team-record 66 games in the ’08-09 season, the Cavs allowed just 91 points a game and 43 percent opponent shooting.

Perhaps some of Brown’s strongest work was his ability to help James become a better defender. After being suspect on defense his first two seasons in the NBA, James steadily improved under Brown. He was named first team All-Defense in each of the last two seasons.

But over the last two seasons, Brown’s defense has struggled in the clutch. In losing in the Eastern Conference Finals in 2009, the Cavs allowed 103 points per game and 48 percent shooting. In getting ousted by the Celtics in the second round this year, the Cavs gave up 100 points and 47 percent shooting per game.

During his tenure Brown was often criticized for his offensive systems. But over the last two years made assistant coaches offensive coordinators and the Cavs had their best offensive year in Brown’s tenure this season. The Cavs were one of the top six offensive teams in the league, averaging 102 points and shooting 48 percent per game.

Brown’s regular season record was 272-138, a .663 winning percentage that was the best in team history. Brown also set a team record for playoff wins, finishing 42-29.

“I have truly enjoyed working with Mike Brown.  Mike has played a huge role in turning around the Cavs organization,” said Danny Ferry in a statement released by the Cavaliers this morning. “Over the past five years, Mike established a work ethic, defensive identity and culture of winning that was not here previously.”

Brown was named the 2009 NBA Coach of the Year by members of the media.

“Mike Brown is a class act. On behalf of the entire Cavaliers organization, there is only gratitude and appreciation for Mike’s accomplishments over the past five years,” stated Cavaliers Majority Owner Dan Gilbert. “I think it is clear that Mike Brown has been instrumental in contributing to the growth and progress we have experienced in recent years. We wish Mike and his family the best of luck in any future challenges that Mike chooses to accept going forward.”

“After a long and deep analysis of all of the factors that led to the disappointing early ends to our playoff runs over the past two seasons, we concluded that it was time for the Cavaliers to move in a different direction,” Gilbert added. “The expectations of this organization are very high and, although change always carries an element of risk, there are times when that risk must be taken in an attempt to break through to new, higher levels of accomplishment. This is one of those times.”

Cavaliers Relieve Mike Brown of Head Coaching Duties

via nba.com

May 24, 2010

The Cleveland Cavaliers have announced that Mike Brown has been relieved of his duties as head coach, Cavaliers General Manager Danny Ferry announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts.

“I have truly enjoyed working with Mike Brown. Mike has played a huge role in turning around the Cavs organization,” Ferry said. “Over the past five years, Mike established a work ethic, defensive identity and culture of winning that was not here previously.”

Brown was hired as the 17th coach in franchise history on June 2, 2005. In five seasons with the Cavs,

Coach Brown

Coach Brown

he compiled a record of 272-138 (.663). Brown was named the 2009 NBA Coach of the Year by members of the media.

“Mike Brown is a class act. On behalf of the entire Cavaliers organization, there is only gratitude and appreciation for Mike’s accomplishments over the past five years,” stated Cavaliers Majority Owner Dan Gilbert. “I think it is clear that Mike Brown has been instrumental in contributing to the growth and progress we have experienced in recent years. We wish Mike and his family the best of luck in any future challenges that Mike chooses to accept going forward.”

“After a long and deep analysis of all of the factors that led to the disappointing early ends to our playoff runs over the past two seasons, we concluded that it was time for the Cavaliers to move in a different direction,” Gilbert added. “The expectations of this organization are very high and, although change always carries an element of risk, there are times when that risk must be taken in an attempt to break through to new, higher levels of accomplishment. This is one of those times.”

Brown compiled a post season record with the Cavs of 42-29 (.592). He led the team to at least the second round of the post season in each of his five seasons, including Cleveland’s first trip to the NBA Finals in 2007.

Cavaliers Exercise Team Option on Leon Powe

he Cleveland Cavaliers have exercised the team option on forward Leon Powe, Cavaliers General Manager Danny Ferry announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts. Per league and team policy, terms of the contract were not announced. 

In returning from a knee-injury that kept him out of action for the first half of the 2009-10 season, Powe returned to the court and played in 20 games

Powe

Powe

(two starts), averaging 4.0 points on .429 shooting and 3.1 rebounds in 11.8 minutes per game. In 209 career games (16 starts), Powe has averaged 6.3 points on .517 shooting and 4.1 rebounds in 14.4 minutes per game.

“Leon has worked hard to rehab and get himself back on the court this past season. Now he has a full summer to continue working, play more basketball and come back to start next season better than ever,” said Cavaliers General Manager Danny Ferry. 

The 6-foot-8 forward was selected by the Denver Nuggets with the 49th overall draft pick in the 2006 NBA Draft and traded for by Boston on draft night. He signed with the Cavaliers as a free agent on August 11, 2009. In 2005-06, Powe led the PAC-10 in scoring (20.5 points per game) and rebounding (10.1 rebounds per game) at California, becoming only the sixth player in conference history to accomplish the feat while earning All-PAC-10 honors.

 

Updated The LeBron Phenomenon Page

Updated 2009-2010 page with images and voting results on The LeBron Phenomenon (under Miscellaneous)

 

MVP

MVP