Cleveland Cavaliers’ general manager, Chris Grant, was fired on Thursday due to the under-performance of the team during the current and past few seasons. The firing comes after the Cavaliers were on a six-game losing streak that brought their record down to 16-33, a far cry from their preseason playoff goal set by owner, Dan Gilbert.
“There is no move, nor any amount of capital investment, we will not make if we believe it will improve our chances of competing and winning in this league for both the short and long term,” Gilbert said in a team statement. “The fans of this great city have invested too much time, money and effort for the kind of product we have recently delivered to them. This must change.”
“This has been a very difficult period for the franchise,”explained Gilbert about the team’s decision. Gilbert went on to state the team has “underperformed” and a change was necessary per expectations. Chris Grant was ultimately fired for multiple disappointing seasons by the Cleveland Cavaliers, and as general manager, it was his primary duty to strategically build a strong and successful team. There is much blame to go around for the Cavaliers’ problems, however, but part of being a general manager is about taking full credibility of a team’s performance.
Ever since Lebron James bolted to join the Miami Heat in 2010 after The Decision, the Cleveland Cavaliers have endured the worst winning percentage of any team in the NBA, as it sits at a measly .287 percent. Lebron James, an Ohio native, was the heart and soul to the Cavaliers until he left for Miami, where he believed he stood a better chance to win championships. The move left the city of Cleveland in shock and anger as the young prodigy moved onto bigger and better things.
Chris Grant did not go into the best situation when he was promoted to general manager in 2010. The Cavaliers’ former, high-profile general manager, Danny Ferry, resigned following another playoff loss in 2010. There was some major uncertainty to whether Lebron would re-sign with the team, to which he did not. This left Grant to take over a franchise whose future was very cloudy as the team began its rebuilding phase.
Grant and the Cleveland Cavaliers had their chances to successfully rebuild a team because the organization had six first-round picks in three years, but only one of those picks was a success. In the 2011 NBA Draft, Grant selected Duke University phenom, Kyrie Irvin, who has been solid at producing impressive statistics, but he has not been able to be the team leader he was supposed to be.
The 2013-2014 Cavaliers’ front office made many moves meant to rejuvenate the team, but they have not turned out like they had hoped. The team chose Anthony Bennett with the number one overall pick in 2013, but he has struggled mightily this season. Bringing back their former head coach Mike Brown has not brought back the winning mentality enjoyed back when Brown coached the Lebron-led Cavaliers. Instead, the team has performed poorly while the effort on the court has become questionable.
With very few personnel moves turning out successfully and the franchise not improving, the Cleveland Cavaliers made their first decision to move forward with the firing of Chris Grant. The assistant general manager, David Griffin, will take Grant’s place and serve as active general manager as the organization mulls its options.
By Glen Parris