David Blatt coached the Cleveland Cavaliers to the NBA Finals. He received backing from GM David Griffin in January when the team sputtered to a 19-20 record. He received additional support from owner Dan Gilbert when the team won the Eastern Conference Finals. Last Wednesday, both Blatt and Griffin indicated the former was set to return next season.
And yet, despite all of this, there still appears to be speculation someone else will be coaching the Cavs next year.
Much of this was fueled by an article from ESPN’s Marc Stein, in which he talked about how LeBron James spent much of the playoffs emasculating Blatt on the sideline. He rejected play selections, seemed to tune out anytime Blatt was talking and often spoke with assistant coach Tyronn Lue instead.
Today, ESPN’s Chris Broussard claimed Blatt was “highly likely to return.” You’d think, with all of the aforementioned support Blatt received throughout the year from management, “highly likely” is a phrase you really shouldn’t have to hear regarding whether or not Blatt returns. However, such is the case for the Cavs’ coach.
There is still a sizable amount of people – fans and media included – who believe Cleveland is better off without Blatt. I’ve already gone on about how such a thing is unfair. At the same time, it’s clear the constant speculation is showing a bigger concern for the Cavs.
Quite frankly, is this continued issue James seems to have with Blatt a significant problem?