Turkey Rumors

Do you think LeBron James is coachable? David Blatt: Hey, listen: How many championships has he won? Obviously, he’s coachable. I can name you 30 NBA coaches right now that would love to have him. Do you think LeBron James fired you? David Blatt: I don’t think that. Of course he didn’t fire me. He’s not the one to do that. That was the management decision.
Storyline: Blatt-LeBron Dynamic
Keith Dambrot, the head basketball coach at the University of Akron, coached James at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School, and the two are still close. I called him the other day on the road, to ask about working with the greatest player in the world. “You can’t be afraid to coach him,” Dambrot says, in a charming twang. “Like all great players, he wants to be coached. I still tell him the truth whenever I talk to him. I think that’s what you do with people you care about: tell ’em the truth. And whenever he’s had any slippage, I know he’s got in his heart, and in his mind, goodness.” “You can’t do anything without LeBron’s blessing; it doesn’t take Albert Einstein to figure that out,” he says of Blatt’s firing. “But LeBron’s never said a negative thing to me about Coach Blatt. And that’s the honest-to-God truth.”
How do you evaluate your own performance in Cleveland? David Blatt: I wish that I had had the knowledge and the experience that I have now when I first came in. I think I could have done a much better job. I know I could have. And I probably could have handled everything a lot easier. But, I didn’t! I went through what I went through. I know in my heart I could have done more. I could have done a better job. Although, I didn’t do a BAD job.
It also left Blatt the forgotten man in the most memorable NBA Finals of a generation. At the time, Blatt was in Italy consulting for the Canadian national team. “Certainly, you feel a twinge,” he tells me. “But look, I had a lot of people that I worked with on that team. I felt genuine happiness for them. I knew what we’d gone through to bring the team to that point, where they could compete on that level. There was genuine joy for the people I cared about.” Due to time differences, Blatt didn’t watch the Finals live. “I was following it, but I wasn’t watching,” he says, “because I was asleep.”