Mike Brown has been fired as head coach of the Cavaliers on the same day the interim tag was removed from David Griffin as general manager.
Brown went 33-49 last season and the Cavs missed the playoffs for the fourth consecutive year. Owner Dan Gilbert hired Brown back prior to last season and admitted he made a mistake in firing him the first time – only to fire him again 384 days later.
Brown signed a five-year, $20 million deal prior to last season, but the Cavs will begin next season with their third coach in as many years.
Gilbert brought Brown back to fix the Cavs’ defense, which was worst in the league during the 2012-13 season. Brown improved the Cavs’ defense from 30th to 12 in opponents’ field-goal percentage and improved the club by nine wins over Byron Scott’s final season, but it wasn’t good enough in part because the Cavs failed to make the playoffs in a dreary Eastern Conference.
Griffin and Gilbert will now embark on finding a replacement and there are no shortage of candidates. Mike D’Antoni and Alvin Gentry are obvious candidates from their ties to Griffin in Phoenix, but George Karl, Mark Jackson and Lionel Hollins are also accomplished coaches and proven winners currently on the market.