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Random thoughts on Mike Brown's return to Cleveland

By Jason Lloyd Published: April 24, 2013
Brown, Mike shouting
By bringing back Mike Brown, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert is admitting he made a mistake in firing him three years ago. (AP/file photo)

Random thoughts this morning while waiting for Mike Brown’s afternoon press conference…

* The Cavs front office isn't going to spend a lot of time today dwelling on three years ago, but Dan Gilbert will inevitably be asked about the decision to fire Brown and now bring him back. And Gilbert, in so many words, is expected to admit firing Brown three years ago was a mistake. A series of decisions culiminated in the Cavs feeling forced to fire Brown to appease LeBron James. It didn't work out so well.

* This is the right move by the Cavs. I think I made that perfectly clear a few days ago. Brown was the best candidate on the market this offseason and the Cavs moved quickly to hire him.

* I don’t want to turn this into a bash session on Byron Scott. I was a staunch defender of Scott’s up until the end. I don’t think he was given a fair chance to succeed here. I thought he deserved the opportunity to return next season … right up until the final couple weeks, when it became clear something had gone drastically wrong. Regardless of what they say now, the players stopped playing for him. Something had to change.

* If nothing else, Brown will demand this team defend. And that’s what owner Dan Gilbert wanted. No one will admit this, but I think Gilbert has had his eye on Brown for a while now. Gilbert has always liked Brown and never wanted to fire him in the first place. It was all an attempt to keep LeBron James here.

* Speaking of James, I haven’t spoken to anyone in his inner circle about this. From a couple of ESPN reports, it sounds as if Brown’s return wouldn’t hinder James from coming back to Cleveland. I have no idea if James will ever return to play here. I’ve always thought it was a possibility and that he would give Cleveland a long look next summer. I still believe that. 

* If anything, the Mike Brown hiring signals that the Cavs are committed to doing what they believe is best right now and not worrying about next summer. They made the mistake once before of guessing what James wanted, then based their coaching decision off of it. Look where it got them. 

* This is not the same team Brown previously coached. Anderson Varejao will likely be the only holdover by the time the players reconvene, so it’s not as if any of these guys have heard Brown’s message before and will automatically tune it out.

* Let’s be clear about something, and I’ll write more about this later. The playing for draft picks is over. Gilbert believes the Cavs can make the playoffs next season. If this team can defend better and stay healthy, he might be right. Either way, the Cavs are playing to win again. The playoffs are the goal for next season. 

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