HoopsHype David Blatt rumors

August 29, 2014 Updates
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The Cavs will compete in two regional home contests in Ohio against a pair of Central Division opponents. The Indiana Pacers will arrive in Cincinnati for a matchup with the Cavs at the Cintas Center on Oct. 15. Cleveland will square off with the Chicago Bulls at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus on Oct. 20. The seven-game slate also includes three games at Quicken Loans Arena where the team will host Head Coach David Blatt’s former club and Israeli-league power Maccabi Tel Aviv on Oct. 5, the Milwaukee Bucks on Oct. 14 and the Dallas Mavericks on Oct. 17. In their preseason finale, the Cavaliers will travel to Memphis to face the Grizzlies on Oct. 22. NBA.com

August 6, 2014 Updates
August 5, 2014 Updates

LeBron James met with new Cleveland Cavaliers coach David Blatt and new general manager David Griffin in person for the first time Tuesday as he prepared for the upcoming season, sources told ESPN.com. James has been extremely busy since announcing his decision to sign with the Cavs last month, going on promotional trips for Nike to Brazil and China while also shooting a movie in New York. James met face-to-face with team owner Dan Gilbert before announcing his free agent choice but had communicated with Griffin and Blatt by telephone and text. ESPN.com

August 4, 2014 Updates
August 3, 2014 Updates

It appears that former Bucks coach Larry Drew, fired in controversial fashion last month when Jason Kidd decided to pursue the job, is making progress in joining David Blatt’s staff with the Cavaliers. Drew has ties with Blatt, who contacted him soon after he was fired by Milwaukee. Drew would join the staff that features associate head coach Tyronn Lue, who was an assistant with the Celtics under Doc Rivers. Former Celtic James Posey was on the Cavaliers’ summer league staff after coaching in the NBADL last season. Boston Globe

Do you support the operation? David Blatt: "Absolutely. In my opinion, this war is Israel's most justified war I can remember in recent years. I'm really sorry about what's happening in Gaza, but there's no doubt that we had to act there, so that Israel will have quiet there once and for all, and we can live in peace." Do you feel support for Israel in the US? David Blatt: "There's support, although sometimes it's not enough. In my opinion, though, there's more support this time than before." Globes.co.il

David Blatt: It's not easy for me when I'm constantly thinking about what's happening in Israel. My two older daughters happen to be on their global post-army service tour, my son is overseas playing in in the European Youth Basketball Championship, and my youngest daughter is also out of the country for a few days. They're all returning to Israel, though, and I'm planning on seeing them again at the beginning of August. I had a plane ticket with Delta Airlines, but I changed to El Al Israel Airlines Ltd. (TASE: ELAL) as soon as Delta canceled its flights to Israel." Globes.co.il

July 29, 2014 Updates

James, who can play any position at any time, may be an option in that role for the Cavaliers. But that style explains why Cleveland is eyeing the NBA's stretchiest four: Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love. Few players of Love's height in NBA history have relied on three-pointers as much as he did last season, when Love took 36% of his shots from behind the three-point line, up from 21% in 2011. It was a greater percentage than even that of James and Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving. "If I know David Blatt," said Maccabi center Shawn James, "he probably wants Kevin Love very bad." Wall Street Journal

Blatt abides by the Princeton offense's principles, he has said, though tweaked for the modern game. That means his system depends on proper floor spacing. To achieve that, his offenses lean on the "stretch four," or a power forward who plays on the perimeter, the position that has overtaken the NBA in recent years. Stretch fours are useful not only because they're added shooting threats. Their absence down low also opens up the lane and makes it easier for drivers, like James, to finish around the rim. "This is the different and unique style in Europe," said former Blatt assistant coach Guy Goodes, his Maccabi Tel Aviv successor. Wall Street Journal

Blatt enters the NBA with an extensive history of strategic tinkering. His former players said coaching flexibility comes with the territory in Europe, where roster turnover is more frequent than it is in the NBA. Blatt was working with even more constraints than most in Tel Aviv. Maccabi's budget, which was dwarfed by that of other Euroleague teams, forced him to get creative in tailoring strategies to the players around him, rather than jamming them into his own set beliefs. "The real key to David's success," said Maccabi forward David Blu, "is that he's able to adjust to his players." Wall Street Journal

July 18, 2014 Updates

Q: The more we learn about the Sports Illustrated story in which LeBron announced his return, the more it’s clear this was quietly in the works in the first week of July. When did you know you had a real chance to get him? David Blatt: When I got the job, and I was spending time with Griff [David Griffin, the team’s GM], working on the draft and on free agency, and trying to offer my insight into building the team — they made me aware of the slight possibility of bringing in LeBron. And the neat thing is, we never even mentioned his name. He was just “the guy.” Q: Really? David Blatt: It was “the guy.” That’s it. LeBron — it reminds me of that Superman movie, the last one, when he comes down and sees Lois Lane, and he says, “I’m always around.” LeBron is part of Ohio, and part of Cleveland, and Akron. So when you’re thinking about anything, if there’s the slightest possibility that he would come back, then he’s always around. He’s in the collective thought process. Grantland

July 16, 2014 Updates

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