CLEVELAND (AP) — Mike Brown’s second shot with the Cavaliers lasted one season.
Brown was fired Monday as coach for the second time in four years by owner Dan Gilbert, who brought back the only coach to get the Cavs to the NBA finals but then dismissed him after the team failed to make the playoffs.
The Cavs went 33-49 under Brown, who had four years remaining on his contract.
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"This is a very tough business," Gilbert said in a statement. "It pains all of us here that we needed to make the difficult decision of releasing Mike Brown. Mike worked hard over this last season to move our team in the right direction. Although, there was some progress from our finish over the few prior seasons, we believe we need to head in a different direction. We wish Mike and his family nothing but the best."
Gilbert also said David Griffin would lose the interim in his title and be the team’s full-time general manager. Gilbert took over on Feb. 6, when Gilbert fired Chris Grant.
Cleveland went 17-16 under Griffin, but the club finished 10th in the weaker Eastern Conference and failed to make the postseason despite Gilbert’s pledge the club would qualify.
Gilbert said he interviewed several other candidates before deciding to give Griffin the full-time gig.
"We chose David as our GM because we believe he is the best person to lead our franchise at this critical time and into the future," Gilbert said. David brings over two decades of experience. He knows the ins and outs of this league as well as anyone and is also an outstanding talent evaluator."
Gilbert said Griffin would lead the search to find Brown’s successor.
While the Cavs showed some improvement, Brown was unable to get the team to play consistently. There were also some personality conflicts between All-Star guard Kyrie Irving and backcourt mate Dion Waiters. Although the two claimed to get along, there was little harmony on the floor.
The Cavs enter a summer when they are expected to be active in free agency and they can offer Irving a maximum contract extension.