Former Cavs GM David Griffin had no idea LeBron James would come back in 2014
Going back on the time machine, former Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin noted he would have done things differently during his tenure had he known about what was soon to await him.
In 2014, Griffin had hired European wonder-coach David Blatt to take over at the helm, thinking his style might suit a young Kyrie Irving growing into a star in the making. Yet Griffin received the ultimate curveball when LeBron James announced his return to Cleveland, putting a championship-caliber superstar to work next to Blatt.
In the latest episode of The Woj Pod with ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Griffin admitted he might have done things differently if he had known about James’ decision beforehand.
Wojnarowski: “If you knew that LeBron James was going to come back, would you have waited to hire a coach in 2014?”
Griffin: “Oh, 100 percent. Sure. We didn’t believe for a second LeBron was coming back at that point.”
James had left the franchise four seasons ago and left with a sour taste in his mouth following owner Dan Gilbert’s comments since his departure. A return to Cleveland was merely hearsay at that point, before shocking the world yet again by coming back to the franchise that drafted him.
Blatt and James eventually clashed with James’ propensity to control what goes on the court — a flexibility that is next to non-existent in the world of European hoops.
He was later fired and replaced by Tyronn Lue in early 2016, which culminated in an NBA championship.