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Monday, January 14, 2008

Cavs Extend Brown. But Why Now?

Posted By on Mon, Jan 14, 2008 at 12:27 PM

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Mike Brown now has four years to prove himself.
Cavaliers head coach Mike Brown received a gracious two-year contract extension today. His previous agreement was set to expire after the 2008-2009 season. Danny Ferry and Dan Gilbert had been discussing a possible extension since last summer, after the Cavs' startling run to the NBA Finals. But they chose an odd time to finalize the deal. The Cavs stand at a disappointing 19-18, and the offense remains a stagnant repetition of two plays: 1) Give the Ball to LeBron, and 2) Repeat. Sure, the team likely will be in the middle of the Eastern Conference playoff seedings, and Brown has done a fine job on the defensive side of the ball, but it's hard to tell how much impact the man with a million glasses really has had on the team, since James so often appears to single-handedly win games. And perhaps the true measure of the coach won’t even be known until the long list of disappointing players with sick contracts (see: Eric Snow, Donyell Marshall, Damon Jones, Larry Hughes) sojourn to some other team with bad talent evaluation. (Click 'More' to read on). Why now, then? What if the team tanks the rest of the season? What if they meander in the middle of the pack and lose in the first round of the playoffs? What if Danny Ferry manages to clear the dead weight and give LeBron some viable cohorts and Mike Brown still doesn’t lead them to a championship, which people seem to agree is the only hope of keeping James in Cleveland? It’s a huge vote of confidence for a murky future. It’s clear there is work to do with the organization. LeBron's frustrating supporting cast has been well documented, but it remains to be seen whether the team's struggles are due to the GM, head coach, or some combination. In any case, Brown now has four years to prove that it’s not him. -- Vince Grzegorek

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