Blatt fired in Cleveland
The Cleveland Cavaliers have the best record in the Eastern Conference, but that didn’t stop them from firing head coach David Blatt on Friday in the midst of just his second season.
The Cavaliers are currently 30-11 on the season, but the team let Blatt go on Friday in place of former player Tyronn Lue, who now takes over as head coach.
“What I see is that we need to build a collective spirit, a strength of spirit, a collective will,” Cleveland GM David Griffin said told ESPN.com. “Elite teams always have that, and you see it everywhere. To be truly elite, we have to buy into a set of values and principles that we believe in. That becomes our identity.”
According to oddsmakers at Bovada.lv, Cleveland is now listed with +300 odds to win the NBA Finals this season. The Warriors are a +150 favorite to repeat, while the Spurs have +250 odds to win it all. Cleveland is currently at -300 to win the Eastern Conference.
Many thought Blatt was in over his head last season and that LeBron James was almost a player/coach. Things seemed to be going smoother this season, but the team elected to make a move, citing James had no impact on the decision, but that seems hard to believe. Cleveland currently has a 3-game lead on the Raptors in the East and a 6.5-game lead on the Bulls in the Central Division. Cleveland has won 8 of its last 10 games as well. Lue has been an assistant coach around the league starting in 2009. He has coached with the Celtics, Clippers and been a Cavs assistant since 2014.