Report: Byron Scott In Negotiations To Coach Cleveland Cavaliers

Reports indicate negotiations are underway to bring Byron Scott on as head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers.

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Brian Shaw To The Cavs? Not So Fast...

On the heels of an earlier report from AOL Fanhouse, Brian Windhorst of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer cautions that nobody’s been offered the job yet, and that right now, Brian Shaw is far from a slam dunk choice:

Not saying it won’t happen but as of now, two sources now telling me Brian Shaw has not been hired by Cavs and right now is “not close.”

Obviously, the reports emerging from Cleveland are drastically different, but that's probably because of the implications a Shaw hiring would have on the rest of the franchise. In any case, the next few days should tell the rest of this story, so stay tuned.

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Tom Izzo Professes Endless Love For Michigan State

Coaches are perhaps the most proficient sorts of people at speaking out of three sides of their mouths simultaneously, but Tom Izzo left no room for speculation Tuesday night as he shot down reports he might leave the Spartans for the Cleveland Cavaliers:

It's been an agonizing week as I tried to make a decision about a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I apologize for the time the process has taken, but sometimes there are opportunities that come about that must be thoroughly examined. I'm no different than any other successful coach in that I've had multiple inquiries before, but this one was uniquely intriguing. There was a lot of information to gather and consider and some of it wasn't easily obtainable. But when making a life decision, I owed it to myself and my family to do my due diligence. From that I never wavered. And I'm pleased to say I am here for life at Michigan State.

Well, that's direct. And a warm welcome back to our favorite John Calipari jokes! We've missed you dreadfully.

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Cavs' Coach Mike Brown Fired: Deserve Got Nothin' To Do With It

It was time for a change in Cleveland.

You may say, "How does Mike Brown possibly deserve to get fired after two 60-win seasons? How do we know it's his fault that the Cavs got knocked out by Boston?" And to that, I'd paraphrase Snoop from The Wire. "It was his time, is all. In the coaching game, deserve got nothin' to do with it."

And it's true.

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Regardless of whether it's "fair," or whether LeBron James stays, the team has maxed out their potential under Mike Brown. For all the defensive intensity instilled over the course of his years in Cleveland, the offense has lagged. Particularly in the playoffs, when it mattered most. Looking for proof? This year, rather than experiment with different lineups when the going got tough against Boston, Brown tethered his team's hopes—and his own future, apparently—to a lineup anchored by Shaquille O'Neal and LeBron James.

In the end, it cost him his job.

Back in March, I wrote that Shaq's thumb injury might prove a blessing. As I said then, "For a few years now, the Cavs have been better when they play small. More fun, more explosive, and just better. The problem this whole time is that Mike Brown, for all his defensive wizardry, almost never goes to small ball unless foul trouble or injuries forces his hand. This doesn't necessarily make the Cavaliers a bad team, but ... it transforms their offense from what should be a sports car, into a plain-but-perfectly-reliable sedan."

"Playing small, the matchups get a lot more impossible for Cleveland opponents. They can spread the floor with shooters, put Lebron and JJ Hickson in the high or low posts, and ... just eviscerate defenses."

"Suddenly, that team goes from a Ford to Ferrari."

Without Shaq in the lineup, the Cavaliers went 21-4 to close out the regular season, running roughshod over just about everyone in their path. Of course, when Shaq came back from injury just in time for the playoffs, there was Mike Brown, and the Cavs were ordinary again.

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J.J. Hickson went to the bench, Shaq went back to starting and playing most of the game, and a team that had looked invincible down the stretch suddenly looked... Vincible?

Whether "vincible" or vulnerable or vexed, the Cavs didn't have what it takes to win a championship with this, their best roster yet. That's not necessarily Mike Brown's fault, but he's been around long enough that it's his turn to take the blame. That's the way coaching works, and frankly, sometimes it's completely reasonable. Brown's been great for Cleveland, but if LeBron comes back, it's probably time for a new voice in that locker room.

Just the way Jon Gruden's arrival in Tampa Bay helped take Tony Dungy's Buccaneers team to a Super Bowl, in pro sports, sometimes a different voice is all it takes to remove the "underachieving" label from a great team. Just like Gruden's success wasn't an indication of Dungy's failure, any future coach of the Cavs isn't going to make Mike Brown look like the dunce here. He did a great job turning this team into a contender. But sometimes, even with the best of coaches, a team needs a change of pace.

Will a new voice in Cleveland be the change that takes the Cavaliers from "good" to "great"?

Maybe not, but the Cavs owed it to their fans to find out.

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It's (Finally) Official: Cleveland Cavaliers Fire Coach Mike Brown

Late Sunday afternoon, ESPN's Ric Bucher reported via Twitter, "[The] Cavs have until midnight to fire Mike Brown or they owe him full $4.5 mil for next season. [They] haven't done so yet, according to a source." But a few hours later, and the news had changed, as Bucher broke the story that Brown has officially been fired by the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Monday morning, the Cavaliers released a statement explaining their decision. Courtesy of SB Nation's Cavs blog, Fear the Sword: "Mike Brown is a class act. On behalf of the entire Cavaliers organization, there is only gratitude and appreciation for Mike's accomplishments over the past five years," stated Cavaliers Majority Owner Dan Gilbert. "I think it is clear that Mike Brown has been instrumental in contributing to the growth and progress we have experienced in recent years. We wish Mike and his family the best of luck in any future challenges that Mike chooses to accept going forward.

"After a long and deep analysis of all of the factors that led to the disappointing early ends to our playoff runs over the past two seasons, we concluded that it was time for the Cavaliers to move in a different direction," Gilbert added. "The expectations of this organization are very high and, although change always carries an element of risk, there are times when that risk must be taken in an attempt to break through to new, higher levels of accomplishment. This is one of those times."

Indeed, for all of Brown's failure in the playoffs, this is still a significant risk--that is, saying goodbye to a man that won 60 games in each of the past two seasons. Apparently, that wasn't enough to save him, even as Boston has proven against Orlando that their victory over the Cavaliers wasn't a fluke.

For more reaction and analysis, check out SB Nation's Cavaliers blog, Fear The Sword.

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Cavaliers Owner Says He Has Not Fired Mike Brown Yet

Dan Gilbert is holding a press conference right now, but before it, he told Brian Windhorst of the Cleveland Plain Dealer that he has not fired Mike Brown, contrary to previous reports.

Dan Gilbert says he has not fired Mike Brown, he's going through the evaluation process. So there, from owner's mouth.    

Gilbert told Windhorst that evaluation process will take place in the next 7-10 days.  

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Brian Windhorst: Mike Brown Hasn't Been Fired Yet

Maybe Mike Brown hasn't been fired quite yet. The Cleveland Plain Dealer's Brian Windhorst reports that Brown is still the Cavaliers' coach ... for now.

This is not true. As of this moment, at least RT @ChrisMannixSI 2 league sources say the Cavs will announce that Mike Brown has been fired    

Windhorst is certainly very plugged in with the Cavaliers, so his report carries a lot of weight.

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