At 6 p.m. ET on Monday, Griffin was on the phone assessing Jimmy Butler’s desire to play with LeBron James and the Cavs, according to two people with direct knowledge of the calls. They requested anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the conversations. By 7:30 p.m. ET, Griffin and the Cavs had parted ways.
David Griffin's departure as Cavaliers' general manager was "a shock" to star forward LeBron James, who can leave as a free agent after next season and moves made now by owner Dan Gilbert will affect his decision. A source close to James told cleveland.com that "LeBron's a player, Dan's the boss, this was Dan's decision," but also that "LeBron does care about what the roster looks like."
"Who they bring in will play a big role in LeBron's decision next summer," said the source, who was granted anonymity to discuss James' reaction. "If they bring in someone who is stable, who has the ability to make things happen, then fine. No harm no foul. But if it's amateur hour, that's a different story."
Chauncey Billups and the Cleveland Cavaliers have mutual interest in a front office role for the retired NBA player, sources told ESPN's Brian Windhorst. Billups has had a relationship with Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert for more than a decade since Billups endorsed Rock Financial, Gilbert's Detroit-based mortgage company, the former guard he was a member of the Detroit Pistons. Billups is also close with Cavs head coach Tyronn Lue and the two dined together several times during the NBA Finals.
Marc Stein: League sources say Justin Zanik will be a strong candidate to work under Chauncey Billups if Billups takes over the Cavs' front office.
David Aldridge: There is no one else on Cavs’ radar right now other than Chauncey Billups (The Vertical first) to run front office after David Griffin ouster.
Howard Beck: Source: LeBron is "disappointed" at Griffin's departure, as well as the timing, & "concerned" abt what this portends for Cavs going forward.
Howard Beck: Worth noting: LeBron and Griffin had a solid working relationship. James appreciated that Griffin made the moves necessary to win.
After the departure of general manager David Griffin, Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert is targeting Chauncey Billups to become the franchise’s president of basketball operations, league sources told The Vertical. Gilbert and Billups will meet soon to discuss the job and a potential deal, league sources told The Vertical.
Dave McMenamin: Per a Cavs source, assistant GM Koby Altman is the man fielding trade phone calls for the franchise right now.
Brian Windhorst: Dan Gilbert didn't consult with LeBron James prior to parting with David Griffin, sources said. James had advocated for Griffin extension
Steve Kyler: For those wondering, Chauncey Billups and current Cavs coach Ty Lue have a long history together as friends off the court.
Currently the Cavs' front office is being run by a conglomeration of Koby Altman, Brock Aller, Tony Leotti, Jon Nichols and Mike Gansey, according to a team source. Gilbert is also "very engaged" in the Cavs' business right now as they prepare for the draft and field potential trade opportunities, according to the source.
Jeff Goodman: I just asked one GM who he would call with the Cavs for trade talks. His response: "Koby Altman?" Altman is highest ranking guy left.
Marc Stein: League sources say the Cavs, until this wild turn, spent much of the day trying to assemble a Jimmy Butler trade. Unclear what happens now.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Cavs front office had difficulty in trade talks this week, constantly needing to address Griffin's future with rival executives. Tough spot.
Chris Fedor: #Cavs owner Dan Gilbert has never renewed any of his GM's contracts despite success. It's all been one (or shorter) contract and done.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Sources: Cleveland owner Dan Gilbert is targeting Chauncey Billups to become Cavs' top basketball executive. Sides expected to talk soon.
David Griffin's tenure as the Cavaliers' general manager is ending, owner Dan Gilbert announced in a statement Former Detroit Pistons star Chauncey Billups is interested in the job, sources told cleveland.com.
Dan Gilbert: On behalf of the entire organization, I would like to thank Griff for his leadership and many contributions during his time here, including most recently, his role in the franchise’s first NBA Championship.
Dan Gilbert: We have no announcement at this time related to new leadership of the Cavaliers basketball operations group, but we are confident our current front office will continue to aggressively explore and pursue opportunities to improve our team in the weeks ahead.
According to a source familiar with the breakdown in negotiations, Griffin did not want to stay going forward with Gilbert's vision for the franchise being different from his.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Griffin will have multiple teams pursuing him for significant money in next round of GM openings. He built a deep, capable Cavs front office
Ric Bucher: Connecting dots just for the heck of it: Jerry West, new LAC consultant, once tried to hire David Griffin in Memphis.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Sources: As David Griffin departs as Cavs -- "Just couldn't agree on future," source says - Chauncey Billups expected to emerge as candidate
Adrian Wojnarowski: Billups has relationship with Dan Gilbert and Ty Lue, and sources say will be considered as President of Basketball Ops who'd make GM hire.
David Griffin is still shepherding the franchise and fielding calls like Pritchard's even though his contract is set to expire June 30th. The lack of resolution in Griffin's situation with the NBA Draft just four days away and free agency commencing in 16 days is starting to cause some unrest within the ranks in Cleveland.
Cavaliers majority owner Dan Gilbert told cleveland.com he would meet with general manager David Griffin "in the next few days" to determine his future with the franchise after crafting a roster that's gone to three consecutive Finals and won it all in 2016. "I feel good about our talent, our personnel, coaching staff, everything," Gilbert said after the Cavs lost to the Golden State Warriors 129-120 in Game 5 Monday. The Warriors are champs, having beaten the Cavs twice in three seasons.
Through a spokesman, Griffin declined to be interviewed for this article but soon followed up with a text that read: “I really appreciate the opportunity to reconsider but I am trying desperately to keep a low profile and my quotes being in something about me just makes me uncomfortable. Ownership wouldn’t appreciate either, I am sure.”
“LeBron can say he wants this, this and that, but somebody has to go out and do the work to get them,” said one rival team executive who did not want to be publicly identified talking about another club. “Acquiring players is hard. You only have so many resources, there’s cap limits, and you’ve got to know the right players to get. The guy has done a great job.”
Marc Stein: The Bucks, meanwhile, remain interested in Cavs general manager David Griffin for their front office vacancy, but Cleveland, as seen with both Orlando and Atlanta, are not granting Milwaukee permission to speak with David Griffin during the playoffs.
Smith was potentially the missing piece that could put the Cavs over the championship hump. Or blow them up entirely. “He acknowledged that his reputation was earned,” said Griffin. “He wasn’t wronged by the existence of his reputation. He earned it. He was the sum of all those things. But he made a conscious decision that he didn’t want to be that anymore and changed his life in a profoundly positive way.”
The Milwaukee Bucks have interest in Cavaliers general manager David Griffin, whose current contract expires at season's end and who is in discussions with Cleveland on continuing there. Multiple sources told cleveland.com that the Bucks, who lost general manager John Hammond to the Orlando Magic this week, have interest in Griffin, 47.
Griffin and Cavs owner Dan Gilbert have spoken about continuing their partnership in recent days, sources said, though no agreement was reached.
ESPN Cleveland: Windhorst: The #Cavs and David Griffin have talked for about 4 hours over the past few weeks but no deal is in place.
ESPN Cleveland: Windhorst: Griff could be a candidate in other places, including Milwaukee. Not sure Atlanta will wait. Griff wants a substantial offer.
The Cavs have also denied permission to the Atlanta Hawks for Griffin to interview for their open general manager position, sources said. Griffin, whose contract expires at the end of July, has recently held talks with Cavs owner Dan Gilbert about his future with the team but nothing had been agreed to as of Monday afternoon, sources said.
Orlando officials had been intrigued with Cleveland GM David Griffin, but moved steadily toward Weltman as they became further engaged with his candidacy in recent weeks, league sources said. Weltman has been deeply involved in every aspect of the Raptors’ front office under president Masai Ujiri as Toronto became a perennial Eastern Conference contender.
The Cavaliers will carry another big piece of Akron with them starting next season when the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company's Wingfoot logo appears on game jerseys.
The Cavs and Goodyear will formally announce the partnership Monday as part of the NBA's three-year pilot program to sell ads on uniforms, starting next season. The pairing makes sense, as Cleveland's star player, LeBron James, is Akron's favorite son, and Goodyear is the city's cornerstone company. It was founded there in 1898.
Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin remains the top current target in Orlando's search for a new president of basketball operations, but at least three more candidates have emerged for the Magic, according to league sources.
Marc Stein: The Magic need a longer list with no assurance they get David Griffin. They likely can't even speak to Griffin until Cavs' playoff run ends
Griffin, 47, who has been Cleveland's general manager for more than three seasons, is a front runner to be offered a job as team president by the Orlando Magic at season's end, according to multiple reports. But sources told cleveland.com that the Magic did not speak to Griffin about the job nor has it obtained permission to do so.
Magic officials have not spoken with Griffin, the Cavaliers’ general manager, because the Cavaliers have not completed their postseason yet. It would border on professional negligence if Magic CEO Alex Martins and the team’s owners, the DeVos family, already have made up their minds to offer Griffin their top basketball operations position without speaking with him first and, at the minimum, understanding how he would try to improve the Magic’s roster.
Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin, who does not have a contract beyond this season, is known to be a frontrunner for the team president.
For now, Cleveland Cavaliers GM David Griffin remains the top candidate in the Magic’s search, but Orlando hasn’t yet asked for permission to speak with Griffin, largely because of the Cavaliers’ playoff status, sources said.
The Orlando Magic’s search process for a new top basketball executive could extend until the end of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ playoff run, which would allow Orlando to gauge the interest of general manager David Griffin, league sources told The Vertical. The Magic are researching multiple possible candidates to replace former GM Rob Hennigan, but the possibility of Griffin does intrigue Orlando CEO Alex Martins and top Magic officials, league sources said. Griffin’s contract expires at the end of the season and talks on a new contract with Cavaliers ownership have been stalled for months, league sources said. There’s an increasing belief among league executives that Griffin could be lured away from Cleveland, league sources said.
The Cleveland Cavaliers' biggest impending free agent might not even wear a uniform. Cavs general manager David Griffin has been operating this season on the final year of his contract after failing to come to an agreement on an extension with ownership this past offseason, multiple sources told ESPN.
Some key voices inside the Cavaliers' locker room have spoken out in support of the GM who has spent more than half his life working in the NBA after starting with the Phoenix Suns as an intern in 1993. "It makes no sense why he shouldn't get an extension," James recently told ESPN. "He's pulled every move -- he's tried to make every move happen -- to better this team to be able to compete for a championship. So, we wouldn't be in this position, obviously, without him and without the guys that are here -- from the coaching staff to the players to Griff. He's been a big piece of it."
James acknowledged that Griffin's contract status mirrors the disrespect the GM has received because of the perception that James ultimately runs the franchise. "Obviously they always want to bring my name into it and say that obviously, it's easier because guys want to be here because I'm here," James told ESPN. "But at the end of the day, he still has to press the right buttons because I'm not in the war room, I'm not in the draft room with those (front office) guys. I don't know how much we may be over the luxury tax or if we have a trade exception here or how that's going to work there or how many days we got to do this. So, it wouldn't, seriously, I don't know why it would make any sense to bring in a new GM. That don't make no sense."
His loss could force general manager David Griffin to find another big man, one with the ability to protect the rim. If the Cavs go down that road, and a source with knowledge of the team's thinking said there's no immediate push to get a new player in during the upcoming three-game roadtrip, they would have to release someone since the roster is at the maximum of 15 players.
According to a team release, Bogut's tibia has been set and won't require surgery. The recovery plan will begin immediately with an extended period of immobilization and healing stimulation. Bogut, a free agent at the end of the season, signed with the Cavs for the prorated veteran's minimum of around $390,000. He is expected to recover in time for training camp, ahead of the 2017-18 season.
The running joke about the Cleveland Cavaliers is that when he’s not humiliating opponents with chase-down blocks, setting up his teammates with those sweet-and-smooth-as-cheesecake passes and continuing to defy age with those gravity-defying dunks, LeBron James is also running basketball operations for the franchise. GM LeBron, as he is known to fans on social media and elsewhere, calls the plays and calls the shots – a characterization that should offend David Griffin, the man who is actually paid to do the job and has spent the past three years aggressively making the decisions to ensure that James is always positioned to win championships. “I take offense to it on [James’] behalf at times,” Griffin told The Vertical. “He doesn’t like that image. I don’t think he wants that image. He wants to lead his troops. He wants to be a player. He wants to lead the guys from within. He never tried to do any more than that. I think for him, it’s almost an unfair characterization of him, that he’s some kind of overlord. That’s not at all what he does.”
Frye referred to Griffin as “a magician” for his ability to always find the right complementary pieces, emphasizing the latest deal for Korver, a shooter who should benefit considerably from the open looks James and Irving tend to provide. James has been making his teammates better since he entered the league but has evolved into something much more in Year 14. “I call LeBron ‘Cheat Code’ at this point,” Griffin told The Vertical, with a laugh, “and the reason is, I know we’ll get almost all of a player’s strengths and really diminish a lot of his weaknesses, and it’s really [because of LeBron’s] presence for the most part. “I’ve said this several times since, but you’re basically charged with the legacy of Babe Ruth, and it’s our responsibility to allow that legacy to grow and evolve,” Griffin told The Vertical. “So it’s almost like a sacred trust that the kid gives you. He’s so good, in his own right, by himself, that he sort of mandates you have to be a title contender just by his presence alone … and if you don’t capitalize on the years he has left, then shame on us.”
Seemingly the only one in the building Griffin hasn't done a deal for is himself; his contract expires at the end of this season.
The Cavs don't have a large front office. After Griffin, it's vice president Trent Redden, who travels the world scouting players the Cavs rarely have picks to use on, and assistant GM Koby Altman, who has a background in the Ivy League and a growing respect in the NBA. Both Redden and Altman will probably be on short lists for future GM openings. Brock Aller is the senior director of strategy, and he has helped identify some of the unique methods the team has used to create trade exceptions to add players despite being capped out. The new collective bargaining agreement has closed some of the loopholes the team exploited over the past few years.
But the Cavs have options. They can make a deal before the trade deadline, and they also have a $9.6 million trade exception to use. Depending on who that player is if they use the trade exception, it would add salary and increase the luxury tax payment. But for the right player, who can help win another championship, the Cavs are willing to make that deal.
He smiles when he sees Delly hit another three or Thompson chase another rebound. He wishes Irving were healthy. He thinks back to 2010-11, when Cleveland lost 26 games in a row, and the future looked bleak. Four years later, the Cavaliers have completed a historic turnaround, and no shortage of people made it possible. James heads the list, of course, with Griffin close behind. But Grant is on there as well. He kept the cap sheet clean and the war chest full, for the moment the Cavs would need it. “You’re proud it all came together for the team,” Grant said. “But more than anything, you’re happy for the people who are still there.”
Chris Haynes: "The assistant coaches of Cleveland Cavaliers' head coach Tyronn Lue obviously they still don't have a contract in place. People I've spoken with, they have told me that frustration is at its worst regarding why they do not have contracts. Their contracts expired July 1st. Assistant coach Damian Jones, Phil Handy, James Posey, Jim Boylan and to a certain extent, Larry Drew. Frustration is mounting. It's at an unbelievable point, that's how it has been described to me."
Cavs general manager David Griffin was working last week to finish the contracts of not only Lue's assistants, but many of his own support staff in the front office. Lue's assistants ran the Cavs' summer league team in Las Vegas without contracts.
"You have to understand, it is so much different in Miami than everywhere else," said Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who played seven years with James in Cleveland before joining him in Miami for a season. "Cleveland is part of the mainstream of the NBA. In Miami, there is one man in charge and that is Pat Riley and everyone falls into line from there. It's very simplified for you. There is one way to do things, his way."
A lover of practical jokes, Gilbert once wanted to dummy up a fake news release that the Cavs were signing Dennis Rodman to a 10-day contract and put it out on April Fools' Day; he was talked out of that one. After a playoff victory over the Washington Wizards 10 years ago, Gilbert had a remote-controlled fart machine installed under coach Mike Brown's seat. When Brown went up to the dais for the postgame news conference, Gilbert stood in the back and worked the controls. Brown was flummoxed -- although the microphones didn't pick up the sounds.
Chris Haynes of Cleveland.com on The Dan Patrick Show: They were highly pissed. I knew this for a fact. They were highly ticked off, this team, when the team didn’t re-sign Kendrick Perkins and they ended up picking up over the summer Sasha Kaun – a 29-, 30-year-old rookie who has not really played at all and I don’t really think is ready for the NBA. So, he’s collecting about $2 million right now a season and not even playing. Kendrick Perkins would’ve been brought back for the veteran’s minimum. Players – I know for a fact, I talked to them – they were highly ticked off about that, not bringing him back. Because it wasn’t about his numbers. It was about the intangibles, the emotional leadership and the enforcer, the enforcement role he brought to the team.
December 2, 2021 | 1:00 pm EST Update
Josh Lewenberg: The Raptors have assigned Dalano Banton and Isaac Bonga to the 905. With both the G League and parent club on long home stands, could see a bunch of back and forth coming up. For tonight, could mean Trent is back and we’ll see more of Flynn (who’s outplayed Banton recently).
Harden is taking only 14.4 shots per game, over two fewer than a year ago and a whopping 10 below his career high. (Tallying fewer than 20 points in a game isn’t the sole mark of irreversible decline, but it’s a neat round number Harden once crossed in his sleep. This season he’s failed to reach it 11 times in 21 tries. Last year it was 13. The season before? Seven. The two seasons combined prior to that? Six.) Thanks to the three-point line and some stellar work in isolation—albeit at half the volume of what it was just two seasons ago—Harden’s true shooting percentage is more or less very good (62.3% over the last 10 games). And after a slow start, he’s beginning to draw fouls and get to the line like he used to. His free-throw rate is one of this season’s 15 best, and the percentage of his points earned at the line jumped from 22.5 in Brooklyn’s first 10 games to 36.5 in 11 through 20—a mark that’s high even for him.
It’s worked so far. The Bulls are 14-8, tied for second place in the East, with top-10 ratings on both offense and defense. They’ve already beaten the Jazz, Nets, and Celtics, as well as both L.A. teams. And the revamped roster is clicking to the point that Chicago can dream about not just avoiding the play-in morass, but challenging for home-court advantage in the first round. “I’m always confident. I put the work in. But having [DeRozan] next to me, having Vooch next to me, Lonzo, that just makes me more confident and more ready to play,” LaVine said at the start of the season. He added, “We got a bunch of no. 1 options.”
That’s where the “tough-shot-maker” role comes in. Since the start of last season, LaVine’s 3-point accuracy is 8 percentage points higher than expected, based on factors like shot angle and defender distance. That’s the fifth-best mark out of 77 players with at least 400 3-point attempts in that span, per Second Spectrum, behind only Joe Harris, Curry, Joe Ingles, and Michael Porter Jr. “I’ve never played with a player like Zach before,” DeRozan said. “The things he’s capable of doing offensively is intimidating at times, how easy he can do the things he can do. It’s fun; it heightens my level to go out there and want to be neck and neck with him.”
This is a weird question to ask a guy who has won three championships, but are there times when you feel like you have to prove something as a coach? I know you don’t get up in the morning worried about that sort of thing, but do you ever ponder your coaching legacy and how people look at your part in this whole thing? Steve Kerr: I never lose any sleep over that. I count my blessings that I’ve been able to coach the players that I’ve coached and be in the organization that I’m in because I know how lucky I am. But part of what allowed me to stay in the NBA for 15 years as a player is that losing humiliates me, you know? My competitive desire drives me. But like a lot of players at this level, the fear of losing is an even bigger motivator. So even though I don’t stop and think about legacy or anything like that, I just want to f—— win, you know? It burns in me. I want to win so badly. It’s kind of how I’ve been since I was five years old, and Draymond’s the same way and Steph’s the same way and Klay’s the same way. And what I love is that collectively, we’re getting off the mat this year. And we’re saying, ‘All right, let’s get it. Let’s do it again.’ Whatever that means. Whatever people write. However people feel about us. The main thing is that we’re competing again and we’re enjoying the competition.
But isn’t there something there, internally, where you reassess? Steve Kerr: It’s great to be back in the mix. What I’ve learned, though, in five trips to the Finals, is that so much is just up in the air — circumstances you can’t control. I know it’s coach speak, but if we just come in every day and get our work in and enjoy the process, we’re going to win a ton of games. We’ve already proven that. We keep trying to get better, put ourselves in the best position possible. We think we can win a championship, but I’ve watched in the Finals. I’ve watched two guys get season-ending injuries. I watched Kevin Love and Kyrie (Irving) go down the first year we won (against Cleveland in 2015). I’ve seen everything. I saw as a Laker fan growing up, with Magic Johnson and Byron Scott holding their hamstrings (in) the Detroit series (in ’89). Just having watched this and been a part of it for so long, who the hell knows what’s going to happen? So you might as well enjoy it while it’s going.
If you go to the tail end of the Durant era, I think there was certainly a sense among people who were close to the team, and who would write about that culture of joy, that you guys may have lost it. So, do you feel like you lost it? Steve Kerr: I think the fifth year was so difficult — physically, spiritually, emotionally — but mainly because it’s just hard. And you can ask anybody from the Lakers and the Celtics in the 80s. You know, (ask) Phil Jackson or Gregg Popovich. When you do something year after year after year, it just gets to be (hard). And there’s a different sense of energy from, say, the first year to the fifth that was going to be there regardless of our personnel. I think we were exhausted organizationally. I think the players were exhausted. We lost two guys to devastating injuries in the (2019) Finals (Thompson and Durant). You almost can’t write a script like that, you know? And it was so brutal. But like I said, when you do something for that long, such a competitive emotional level — five years, and teams trying to knock you off and building their team to beat you, it’s exhausting. And I think we were all just exhausted.