Mike Brown and the Cavaliers have reached a handshake agreement on a
new deal, a league source told the Akron Beacon Journal on Tuesday. An official
announcement should be made Wednesday.
The source spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the negotiations.
Brown is the Cavs' most successful coach in team history and his .653 winning percentage ranks sixth all-time (minimum 450 games) among coaches. His hiring marks a fascinating return to the organization that fired him just three years ago in a futile attempt to keep LeBron James in Cleveland.
Brown is 314-167 in parts of seven seasons and his team has reached the playoffs and won in the first round in each of his six full seasons. Brown was fired five games into this season by the Los Angeles Lakers, but returns to a Cavs team that has spent the last three years rebuilding under Byron Scott, who was fired last week after compiling a 64-166 record in three years.
Brown immediately emerged as the leading candidate shortly after General Manager Chris Grant described the Cavs' next coach as defensive minded and a grinder. Brown's defensive schemes took the Cavs to the NBA Finals in 2007 and, partnered with James, the organization enjoyed its most successful stretch of basketball.
Brown's lack of creativity on offense has been an ongoing concern, but his teams typically rank among the best in the league defensively. Grant and owner Dan Gilbert have been unhappy with the progress the Cavs have made defensively since Brown was fired.
Brown met in Detroit with Gilbert and Grant on Sunday and negotiations quickly escalated. The Cavs intended to move quickly on a replacement all along, according to sources, because so many coaching vacancies are expected this summer.
ESPN.com reported the Phoenix Suns reached out to Brown to gauge his interest and CBS Sports identified Brown as a top candidate for the Philadelphia 76ers' vacancy.
Provided the remaining few details can be worked out, it appears Brown is off the market -- and the Cavs' new coach is also their old one.
(c)2013 the Akron Beacon Journal (Akron, Ohio)
Distributed by MCT Information Services
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