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#pounditSunday, September 26, 2021

Articles tagged: Cleveland Cavaliers

Cavs sign head coach JB Bickerstaff to multi-year extension

JB Bickerstaff

All indications when JB Bickerstaff took over as the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers last month were that he was not doing so on an interim basis, and the team has now confirmed that.

The Cavs have signed Bickerstaff to a multi-year extension, Kelsey Russo of The Athletic reports.

Bickerstaff had previously taken over as the interim head coach of the Houston Rockets and Memphis Grizzlies, so he had plenty of experience in the role. The Cavs had reportedly planned to make him their head coach eventually, but the plan came to fruition much earlier than expected after John Beilein stepped down.

Beilein was a bad fit in Cleveland from the start, as his college ways simply did not transition to the NBA. He was unable to connect with his players all season, and the situation reached a boiling point when he referred to them as “thugs” — something he apologized for and said was inadvertent. Bickerstaff has more experience in the NBA, so it is no surprise that the Cavs see him as better suited for the job going forward.

Did Kevin Love sabotage John Beilein as Cavs head coach?

Kevin Love

John Beilein didn’t work as the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, and it sounds like Kevin Love did him no favors.

Beilein officially resigned during the week after going 14-40 as the Cavs’ head coach, and he was replaced by JB Bickerstaff. Beilein had issues with some of the players, and there were complaints about Beilein running things like a college program.

At first, much of the criticism about Beilein’s tenure was aimed at the coach, but on Thursday, Charles Barkley said the players were to blame. Barkley is not the only one hinting at that.

During Thursday’s edition of the “Brian Windhorst & The Hoop Collective” podcast, Windhorst and co-host Tim MacMahon talked about how Love seemed to undermine the hiring.

Windhorst said Love showed up for training camp at effectively the last minute. MacMahon also talked about how Love was against Beilein.

“Kevin Love did everything but rent a billboard saying Beilein sucks,” MacMahon said. “There was zero percent chance of Beilein, and it wasn’t gonna work regardless, but with Kevin Love around that was gonna be a complete disaster. Because he was gonna make it clear how much he thought this coach was over his head, and he was gonna be right.”

Whether Love was against the Beilein hire or not, it was clear this season that Love had issues with the Cavs. Love screamed at the team’s GM in early January and was seen getting upset with another player. Love exhibited poor leadership, which likely contributed to the team’s poor record, and Beilein’s difficulties connecting with the players.

Charles Barkley defends John Beilein, calls out Cavaliers players

Charles Barkley

John Beilein’s tenure as the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers did not go well, and Charles Barkley believes a big part of that is due to the team’s players.

Barkley spoke on TNT’s “Inside the NBA” Thursday night, which was the first day of games since the All-Star break. Barkley said the Cavs players tried to get Beilein fired. He equally blamed the veterans for not being good leaders, and the young players for thinking they were too good to do what Beilein was asking of them.

“I want to call out the Cleveland Cavaliers. I thought what they did to Coach Beilein was ridiculous, unprofessional,” Barkley said on TNT. “I think the veterans on that team were not leaders. I think the young guys who can’t play think they’re better than they are and they tried to get that man fired.”

Beilein was unable to connect with his players or get them to buy in. The complaints from players had to do with practicing too hard, watching too much film, and Beilein trying to implement a college culture.

The blame for the issues probably falls on both parties. The players — and especially the veterans — maybe could have made a better effort to give Beilein a chance. And Beilein maybe could have worked harder to build trust first before implementing his complete culture.

John Beilein resigns as Cavaliers head coach

John Beilein

John Beilein’s tenure as head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers is officially over.

As expected, Beilein resigned on Wednesday, just 54 games into his first season as the Cavs’ head coach. The organization said Beilein would be reassigned to a different role within the franchise.

“This was a very difficult decision for me, but I want to be clear – this was my decision to step down and I truly appreciate the understanding and support of the front office during this time,” Beilein said in a team statement. “I find losing very challenging and this year has taken a much bigger toll on me than I expected. I grew concerned for the consequences this toll could potentially take on my own health and my family’s well-being down the road. I was not certain I could be at my best for the remainder of the season and in the future. That would not be fair to the players, coaches and support staff.”

The Cavaliers did not explicitly confirm it, but Beilein’s statement mentioned J.B. Bickerstaff’s readiness to take over the head coach role. He is expected to get the job going forward.

The Cavs have a 14-40 record this season, a rate of losing that Beilein simply isn’t accustomed to. His fundamentals-first approach was not a good fit for the NBA, and he caused further issues for himself when he inadvertently referred to his players as “thugs.” Though he will remain with the organization for now, a return to college could be a possibility once the season ends and jobs open up at that level.

Report: Cavs players taunted John Beilein by playing songs with word ‘thug’

John Beilein

John Beilein was unable to make it through a full season in his first year as an NBA head coach, and his inability to relate to his players appears to have been the biggest reason for that. While Beilein insisted he misspoke last month when he called his players “thugs,” that was ultimately the beginning of the end for him with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Athletic published an in-depth look at what went wrong with Beilein in his first NBA coaching gig, and it’s clear the infamous film session on Jan. 8 became a huge issue for Cavs players. During that session, Beilein called his players “thugs,” and he later apologized and said he meant to call them “slugs” in reference to their slow play. Several players didn’t accept the explanation or the apology, according to The Athletic.

Even after Beilein apologized, some Cavs players reportedly began taunting him by intentionally playing songs that included the word “thug” when Beilein was present. They apparently did this on numerous occasions.

Instead, multiple players began playing songs that included the word “thug” whenever Beilein was within earshot, sources said: Bone Thugz-n-Harmony’s “Thuggish Ruggish Bone” and Tupac’s “Thugz Mansion” among them. As the team boarded the bus a few days after the incident, one player was intentionally playing Trick Daddy’s “I’m a Thug” with Beilein a few feet away. Other players blasted songs with the word “thug” loudly during workouts in the facility. Players did this to make light of a very tough situation, according to one team source.

One player told The Athletic that what bothered him the most was Beilein “not owning that he said it.”

Beilein was already having issues with players before the “thugs” incident, as the team was said to be unhappy with the way he was trying to create a college-style environment at the pro level. Even Shaq unloaded on Cavs players for being so sensitive about Beilein’s criticisms, but the damage was done at that point. Some coaches simply aren’t cut out for the NBA, and that may be the case with Beilein.

JB Bickerstaff expected to replace John Beilein as Cavs head coach

JB Bickerstaff

The Cleveland Cavaliers and John Beilein are working on a buyout agreement that would end the coach’s time as the Cavs head coach, and J.B. Bickerstaff is expected to become the new interim head coach, according to reports.

There has been talk since Sunday night’s All-Star Game that Beilein was considering stepping down as the Cavs’ coach during the All-Star Break. The Athletic reported on Tuesday that the two sides are in advanced buyout talks that are expected to commence by Wednesday, and possibly later on Tuesday.

Bickerstaff, who has served as an interim head coach twice previously during his career, is expected to take over, according to numerous reports.

Bickerstaff served as an interim head coach in Memphis and Houston previously and is likely to be the Cavs’ coach when they hold practice on Wednesday.

The Cavaliers are 14-40 and entered the All-Star break with the worst record in the Eastern Conference. This is Beilein’s first season as an NBA head coach after his successful stint at Michigan.

There have been talks about issues with Beilein working as an NBA coach since December. A report at the time said players did not like the way Beilein was operating the team like a college program. There was another moment when Beilein received negative publicity in January when he inadvertently called his players “thugs” instead of “slugs.”

John Beilein will reportedly not coach Cavs beyond this season

John Beilein

John Beilein will not be the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers for much longer, and it sounds like the only question is whether he will leave the team immediately or at the conclusion of the 2019-20 season.

Reports have indicated that Beilein is not expected to remain the head coach of the Cavs and could step down during the All-Star break. According to The Athletic, Beilein will meet with Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert on Monday to discuss his options, and the 67-year-old will either part ways with the team this week or after the season.

Cleveland is 14-40 and entered the All-Star break with the worst record in the Eastern Conference. This is Beilein’s first year as an NBA head coach after he had a successful stint at Michigan, and there’s a chance his parting of ways with the Cavs could truly be mutual.

There have been talks about issues with Beilein working as an NBA coach since December. A report at the time said players did not like the way Beilein was operating the team like a college program. There was another moment when Beilein received negative publicity in January when he inadvertently called his players “thugs” instead of “slugs.”

Given all that has transpired, it would not be a surprise if Beilein has quickly learned that coaching in the NBA is not for him. J.B. Bickerstaff, who is currently an assistant coach with the Cavs, has been mentioned as a possible replacement if and when Beilein steps away.

Report: John Beilein could step down as Cavaliers head coach

John Beilein

John Beilein’s tenure as head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers is expected to be a brief one.

The Athletic reported on Sunday night Beilein is not expected to remain as the Cavaliers’ head coach beyond this season. ESPN took that a step further, saying there have been talks about Beilein stepping down during the All-Star break.

Woj says Beilein is weighing his future and considering stepping down.

The Cavaliers are 14-40 and entered the All-Star break with the worst record in the Eastern Conference. This is Beilein’s first season as an NBA head coach after his successful stint at Michigan.

There have been talks about issues with Beilein working as an NBA coach since December. A report at the time said players did not like the way Beilein was operating the team like a college program. There was another moment when Beilein received negative publicity in January when he inadvertently called his players “thugs” instead of “slugs.”

J.B. Bickerstaff, who is currently an assistant coach with the Cavs, was mentioned as a possible replacement if Beilein were to step away. Bickerstaff has served as an interim head coach in Houston and Memphis previously.

Report: Tristan Thompson will not be bought out by Cavs

Tristan Thompson

The Cleveland Cavaliers did not trade Tristan Thompson ahead of Thursday’s deadline, and the veteran big man is now expected to finish the season with the team.

The Cavs made a blockbuster move on Thursday when they acquired Andre Drummond from the Detroit Pistons, and that led to speculation that they would either trade Thompson or buy out his contract. However, David Aldridge of The Athletic reports that the Cavs plan to keep Thompson on their roster for the remainder of the year before he becomes a free agent.

Cleveland seemingly has less use for Thompson now after acquiring Drummond, and Thompson has reportedly drawn interest from multiple contending teams. The 28-year-old is averaging 11.9 points and 10.4 rebounds per game.

The market would likely be robust for Thompson if the Cavs were to buy him out.

Andre Drummond traded to Cavs from Pistons

The Detroit Pistons have decided to move on from Andre Drummond, but you may be surprised to hear where the All-Star big man ended up.

Drummond has been traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski first reported.

Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer reports that the Pistons are getting Brandon Knight, John Henson and a second-round draft pick from Cleveland.

Drummond had been linked to a number of contending teams ahead of Thursday’s deadline, and the Cavs certainly don’t fit that bill with their record of 13-39. They obviously are not acquiring Drummond with the intention of making a playoff run, so they must believe they can re-sign him this summer and build around him going forward.

Drummond is averaging a career-high 17.8 points to go along with 15.8 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game. The Pistons had discussions about him with several teams, and it makes sense that they are getting what they can for him now if they don’t believe he wanted to re-sign with them after the season. However, it’s unclear if the Cavs will have a good shot at re-signing Drummond if he wants to play for a contender.