Questions In Cleveland, Cavs Playing Dangerous Game
Brian Shaw left Cleveland and headed back to Los Angeles, his head likely spinning as to why the Cavaliers hit the panic button when news leaked that the Lakers' assistant was their choice as coach.
The Cavs still say they have two finalists. In reality, they have one.
Only the team's braintrust knows why they're doing this. It could be because of LeBron James, who hits the unemployment line at midnight Eastern tonight and may or may not be on board with the idea of Shaw as coach if he returns. It may be because of the Lakers element, a possible fear that somewhere between choosing a coach and actually signing him Jackson could announce his retirement and both Shaw and Scott would make a mad dash for Staples Center.
The Cavs were telling reporters Wednesday morning that it stands to reason one of these two men will be the coach, but reason has not ruled this process. They said former coach Mike Brown wasn't fired before he was fired. They said James would not be consulted on significant decisions while the entire basketball world said otherwise. They said Michigan State coach Tom Izzo had no job offer while he publicly agonized over whether or not to accept a five-year, $30 million deal.
Now they have Shaw's agent telling the Los Angeles Times they were close to a deal, followed by reports that Shaw was already shopping for a coaching staff. They have Scott's agent offering a concession speech through the media that still stands as his side's stance, a clear message the Cavs are choosing to ignore. They have the kind of mess they didn't need on the eve of the organization's most important day, an ill-timed distraction that some call semantics and I would call sloppiness.
They're telling involved parties that it will all be worked out by day's end Thursday, meaning the notion that new candidates could become involved and chosen in that time frame would be quite miraculous. They have quite a mess on their hands, these cavalier Cavs. And it's time to clean it up.
Sam Amick can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @samickFanHouse.