Cavaliers name veteran college coach Beilein as new HC
The Cleveland Cavaliers, in rebuilding mode after a 19-63 National Basketball Association season, have hired veteran collegiate coach John Beilein to fill their head coaching job, the team said on Monday.
Beilein replaces Larry Drew, who took over the job when Tyronn Lue was sacked six games into the Cavs' first season since superstar LeBron James departed via free agency for the Los Angeles Lakers.
In 41 years coaching university teams Beilein has posted 35 winning seasons, and in his past 12 seasons at the University of Michigan he has mentored nine NBA draft choices and built a reputation as a savvy offensive tactician.
"We could not be more thrilled to name John Beilein as the new coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers," Cavs owner Dan Gilbert said in a statement. "First, John is a great human being. He cares deeply about his players and others who work for him and around him. He defines the words class, integrity and character.
"He is a tireless worker who obsesses about finding better ways and the inches that will help his team and the organization grow. John is a brilliant basketball mind and last but not least, John Beilein is a winner."
Beilein said he thought the Cavaliers were "the perfect fit".
"With hard work and dedication by all of us, we will grow this team day by day and reinforce a culture of success that sustains itself with strong core values," he said. "Cleveland is a great city with amazing fans and I am really looking forward to calling Cleveland home for years to come."
Elsewhere on Monday, the Los Angeles Lakers confirmed that former Indiana Pacers and Orlando Magic coach Frank Vogel had signed a multi-year contract to coach the storied NBA franchise.
The announcement follows multiple media reports at the weekend that Vogel would be the next head coach of a Lakers team led by James.
"We are excited to add Frank Vogel as the next head coach of the Lakers," Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka said.
"Coach Vogel has a proven track record of success in the NBA playoffs, and he reflects the core qualities we were looking for in a head coach — including detailed game preparation, extreme hard work, and holding players accountable to the highest basketball standards."
Vogel said he was "very excited" by the opportunity.
"I look forward to coaching such phenomenal talent and bringing my strategic vision to the team," he said.
Vogel, 45, went 304-291 in eight seasons as an NBA coach, six with Indiana from 2010-2016 and the next two with a rebuilding Orlando squad.
He led the Pacers to five playoff appearances and back-to-back trips to the Eastern Conference finals in 2013 and 2014.
Reports of his hiring came after the Lakers, who have missed the NBA playoffs for six consecutive seasons, reportedly were unable to come to terms with Lue, James' former coach in Cleveland.
James joined the team as a free agent prior to last season after eight consecutive trips to the NBA Finals with Miami and Cleveland.
The Lakers parted ways with coach Luke Walton last month.