The Cleveland Cavaliers have fired second-year coach David Blatt, multiple sources confirmed to ESPN.
The title-hopeful Cavaliers lead the Eastern Conference at 30-11 but were blown out by the defending champion Golden State Warriors on Monday. Blatt had lost support of the locker room over the past month, sources told ESPN’s Brian Windhorst.
Associate head coach Tyronn Lue has been elevated to interim head coach, according to sources. Lue signed a three-year contract Friday to be the team’s head coach, according to Yahoo! Sports, which also first reported Blatt’s firing.
Sources told ESPN’s Chris Broussard that many Cavs players, especially the veterans, felt like Blatt was in over his head as coach. They questioned whether he knew the league well enough to lead them to a championship.
LeBron James was not consulted before the Cavaliers made the move to dismiss Blatt and was informed of the decision Friday, sources told Windhorst.
Blatt leaves the Cavaliers, his first NBA coaching job, with an 83-40 record, and his .675 winning percentage was the best of any coach in franchise history. Cleveland lost to Golden State in the NBA Finals in Blatt’s first season and James’ return to the Cavs.
Cleveland started the season without Kyrie Irving and Iman Shumpert for the first two months because of injuries. Timofey Mozgov (knee) and James (back) also were less than 100 percent coming out of training camp