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AFP
February 21, 2020

Beilein resigns as Cavs coach

Sports

AFP
February 21, 2020

WASHINGTON: John Beilein, unable to spark the moribund Cleveland Cavaliers above the second-worst record in the NBA this season, resigned as coach of the struggling club on Wednesday.

The 67-year-old American, who left the University of Michigan coaching post last May after 12 seasons to take charge of the Cavs, will be reassigned to a different role within the organization, the team announced.

“Over these last nine months, I have given my all to this organisation, but after much reflection, I have decided that it is best that I step back and resign from my position as head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers and assist the organisation in a different capacity,” Beilein said.

Associate head coach J.B. Bickerstaff was elevated to replace Beilein as the full-time head coach, the league announced. The Cavaliers were 14-40 at the NBA All-Star Game break, last in the Eastern Conference with only Golden State (12-43) owning a worse record.

Beilein struggled to calm a locker room issue after claiming he misspoke when telling his team they were no longer playing like a bunch of “thugs”. The Cavs snapped a 12-game home losing streak just before the break but have lost five games in a row or more five different times this season.

“This was a very difficult decision for me, but I want to be clear — this was my decision to step down and I truly appreciate the understanding and support of the front office during this time,” Beilein said. “I find losing very challenging and this year has taken a much bigger toll on me than I expected. I grew concerned for the consequences this toll could potentially take on my own health and my family’s well-being down the road.”