After an aggressive offseason the Lakers added superstars Dwight Howard and Steve Nash, along with signing key role players Jodie Meeks and Antwan Jamison in hopes of delivering NBA superstar Kobe Bryant his sixth championship. But after a 1-4 start the front office decided it was time to go in a different direction.
Brown coached Heat star LeBron James in his first two MVP seasons along with his first trip to the NBA finals in 2007 and was the coach that helped enable James to focus more on his defense.
” I think it’s unfortunate,” James said Friday after the Heat’s win in against the Atlanta Hawks. “I just don’t think he got a fair shake, honestly. With the shortened season last year, and five games into this year, he didn’t really get a full season.”
Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra also has ties to Brown, whom he considers as one of his closes friends in the league.
” “When you see one of your coaching peers, one of your fraternity, not get an opportunity, that’s tough,” Spoelstra said of Brown. “Mike is an excellent coach. He has proven it. He has got an excellent track record. It’s a shame that it came down like that.”
Both James and Spoelstra had strong feelings about the news. Brown who was fired by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the summer of 2010 before James departed, was known as a defensive coach who failed alongside James to deliver the Cavs a championship. Yet apparently James might feel that he himself deserves more of the fault for the Cavs failures and that Brown’s recent struggles have no connection to the past the two share.
“I’ve got a lot to say, but I’m not going to say it right now,” said James,” I wish him the best, but I just think it’s unfortunate and it’s just, you know, how the league is. They can do what they want to do.”
The only question is that if Brown is such a good coach, why would Cleveland fire him in hopes to keep James in 2010? And why didn’t he join James and former Cavalier Žydrūnas Ilgauskas when they went to South Beach?