It’s official; Mike Brown is headed back to Cleveland.
According to sources, the two sides have agreed to a five-year, $20 million deal. Cleveland has a team option for the fifth year, which Brown would be paid an undisclosed guaranteed amount.
After the Cavs fired Brown in 2010, he moved on to Los Angeles to succeed Phil Jackson as the Lakers’ head coach. Five games into this season, the Lakers let Brown go, in favor of Mike D’Antoni.
Brown’s most successful days came in Cleveland during the LeBron James’ era. His firing came directly after two consecutive 60-win seasons, and a trip to the NBA Finals in 2007. Brown’s overall record in his first stint with the Cavs was an impressive 272-138.
There were reports that Cleveland Cavaliers’ owner Dan Gilbert and general manager Chris Grant had reached out to Phil Jackson concerning their coaching vacancy, but the 11-time champion declined.
Brown met with Gilbert and Grant for a dinner meeting on Sunday, and the meeting went well. The job was not offered at the time, but both sides agreed to talk later on in the week.
It didn’t take very long for the Cavs to decide Brown was the right guy for the job and agree on a deal. Just two days after their meeting, the Cavs offered Brown the job, and he immediately accepted. Cleveland interviewed no other coaches.
Brown was offered the Phoenix Suns’ coaching job mid-season when Alvin Gentry was fired and again since the end of the season, declining both times. According to sources, All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and the substantial amount of salary cap space the team possesses coupled with his family’s plan of moving back to Cleveland made the Cavaliers’ job one of the best available in Brown’s eyes.
Mike Brown will replace his replacement in Cleveland, Byron Scott, after three sub-.500 seasons.