Thursday, April 1st, 2010 at 11:00 am  |  35 responses

LeBron James Designed Game-Winning Play

Hey, Mike Brown. Have you met the real coach of the Cavs yet? His name is LeBron, reports the Akron Beacon Journal: “It took a hoop from LeBron James with 17.4 seconds left in the game off a pass from a driving Mo Williams to give the Cavs the advantage they needed in a 101-98 win over the Milwaukee Bucks. Coach Mike Brown said the play came from James (23 points, nine rebounds, seven assists). ‘When he brought it up, I kind of chuckled because I was like: ‘Really? Are you kidding me?’ And lo and behold, they went out there and executed the play to a T,’ the coach said. ‘I don’t know if we’ve ever run the play before in that situation.’ James said it’s a play that the team doesn’t use a lot intentionally.”

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  • drgstyle

    Get him to the clippers now he can be player coach

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    The nerve of this guy trying to draw up a play to win a game. What an idiot. Why not just accept losing and move on?

  • Jackie Moon

    What you don’t know is that he designed their uniforms, too.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/category/blogs/farmer-jones/ Ryan Jones

    The story doesn’t really make clear if LeBron actually “drew up” the play, or (seemingly more likely) suggested a play that was in the books.
    But, either way.

  • http://coco-vents.blogspot.com Co Co

    Now Ryan, you’re going to be hard pressed to convince anyone that Mike Brown has a play book.

  • http://cache.daylife.com/imageserve/04bTeKZdZsgep/610x.jpg neaorin

    There’s even a pic of the whole incident (click my name to view it)

  • http://www.slamonline.com/ niQ

    Mike Brown’s play book is actually a colouring book.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Yeah, co-sign Ryan.
    Some of y’all need to re-read the post.
    From all indications, they ran a play that’s already in the playbook, but is seldom used. Lebron suggested running that play, and Brown agreed.
    That is not unusual.
    Mike Brown has issues, no doubt, but man dude does not get the benefit of the doubt at all.

  • Yesse

    Next Bill Russell? lol.

  • T-Money

    That’s in the playbook. They run it actually quite often, LeBron had an incredible dunk off of that play in the X-Mas showdown vs LA. It’s always Mo driving to the baseline from the left side of the floor and dropping a bounce pass in the lane as Bron catches a backscreen. I fail to see how it’s news worthy that a superstar suggested a play. How about Mike Brown subbing offense/defense with Jamario and Mo Williams in the last 2 mins? That wasn’t coaching? Mike Brown is not Pop or Larry Brown but he’s not freaking Spoelstra or Triano either.

  • http://slamonline.com CB 34

    It’s an old play. They’ve been running it for 2 years now. They never use it in a close game like that in crunch time but they do run it and it’s mostly Lebron who catches the pass and often resulting in a dunk. I think it’s a great play and i’ve hardly ever seen this play broken up. Varejao is the 2nd option, cutting if Lebron doesn’t get the pass. The cavs should use this play more since it’s very successful.

  • http://fdjsklf.com Jukai

    T-Money: On offense, give me Spolestra or Triano anyday. No, seriously. I mean that.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/category/blogs/farmer-jones/ Ryan Jones

    If MIke Brown is as dumb as a lot of us seem to think he is and still “coaching” a team that’s gonna win 60-plus games, unanimously confirmed geniuses Phil and Pop should be averaging 90 wins a year.

  • http://theurbangriot.com/ NUPE

    I think a lot of coaches listen to their players (not just superstars) when suggestions are made. Often times the players have a better feel for what/who they can take advantage of in a particular situation and it would be foolish to not pay attention to that. Of course the coach doesn’t/shouldn’t run the players suggestion all the time, but in this case it proved to be the right call at the right time. I’m not an MB fan, but glad he listened.

  • T-Money

    Jukai: what is Toronto running that’s so great? They chuck it up and they increase the number of possessions. Triano doesn’t run any complex offense. Spoelstra? Are you out of your mind? What has he done, like ever? But all of that is besides the point. Mike Brown is a flat out better coach than both. Mike Brown, as a head coach, gives you a better chance of winning games than Triano and Spoelstra and that’s not even close. People make a big deal about his assistant coordinating the offense but nothing gets done without his consent. I can’t quite remember people giving Phil a hard time because Tex would run the triangle.


    What no one has mentioned, is that this incident is known because Brown talked about it in detail during his postgame conference. He said he was both amused and proud of Lebron for picking this designed play to run at this time. This coach isn’t perfect, but he gets a lot of his bad rap because he trusts his players to do a little self coaching during games, (OK mostly Lebron, but still), and he trusts his assistants implicitly. Admittedly, a change from Stan van Sweaty micromanaging the placement of every single player on every play. But it works. Brown is an underrated coach who gives praise when due.

  • T-Money

    I feel that some people will never respect Mike Brown as a coach because he has no ego. He will always listen advices from his assistants and players and won’t hesitate to them props. A lot of coaches would not have mentioned that they didnt call that play. He doesn’t care, he just wants to win. The Cavs overachieved in the playoffs for 2-3 years before the Orlando series with mediocre talent because the first things he preached when he got to Cleveland is defense and rebounding. He doesn’t believe in run n gun. He has the most sophisticated defensive schemes in the NBA that’s geared to get people to take contested midrange jumpers (aka the least efficient shot in basketball). That’s not coaching?

  • http://jayemmbee.blogspot.com/ ClutchPerformer

    he just looks like a better coach, every coach would look better if you had a Lebron James, team. and Triano is a good offensive coach, as proved by the raptors high offensive numbers, Defense…lets not go there cuz it aint pretty. Spolstra, man his plays is Doug Collins plays back on Chicago days, Give it to Jordan/Wade and Get the F**K out the way.
    its like Sam Mitchell, he wasnt a good coach he just got better players and a weak division made him look good, next year he got exposed and fired. Mike Brown happens to look good, same with Phil Jackson , I love the Guy but hes had team with the G.O.A.T. , The Diesel and Kobe, etc. they had great players, put either or them to coach Milwaukee or say Toronto, a team with no players that the NBA doesnt ride ala bron and Kob. and see if they all that. this year Mike Brown looks good cuz Clevland is stacked , has better players and Lebron is playing better and refs and the league give him everything he wants. put Mike in the 80s, 90s where you had to coach, and he would be fired long time ago, cuz as we know Mikes only play is also the Doug Collins Special “Give it to MJ/LBJ and get the F**K out the way” but it just happens that lebron passes, that was their plays in the early years, if mike brown coached kobe, kobe could get away with ball hogging it all day and would be averaging mad points

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/category/blogs/farmer-jones/ Ryan Jones

    T-Money makes a great point. Brown’s apparently got some thick-@ss skin and doesn’t seem to care what us uninformed masses think of his coaching ability. It’s not the Phil Jax super-ego approach, but it’s working pretty well for his team.

  • http://slamonline.com tealish

    You guys haven’t seen the Cavs run that play before?
    It’s definitely in their playbook. The execute it throughout the game quite often, despite what ‘Bron says. They just never used it in an end of game situation.
    So yeah, the play was there. Brown was probably like “So… I guess let’s just give it to LeB—” LeBron: “why don’t we do this instead?” Brown: “sure”.

  • http://Www.slamonline.com Myles Brown

    ^That. What’s the next headline, Kobe invented the triangle?

  • T-Money

    Cleveland in 9th in scoring (virtualy tied with ”brilliant” offensive squads offenses like Atlanta, Orlando and LA), 1st in pts differential, 3rd in FG%, 2nd in 3FG%. Whatever Brown is doing/not doing on offense seems to be working just fine, no? Let’s pretend that the Cavs don’t run deadly scissor cuts with Mo and Bron around Andy V. Let’s just pretend that it wasn’t Mike’S call to let Twan rock at the 3 when LeBron subs out at the start of the 1st and 3rd. Let’s just pretend that he didn’t sub offense/defense with J-Moon and Mo. Let’s just pretend that he hasn’t integrated known defensive liabilities like Mo, Twan and (somewhat) Shaq in his schemes without skipping a beat. I mean, people make it seem like he’s the worst coach ever. Again, he’s not Pop, he’s not Larry Brown but he’s a damn good coach with some weaknesses. Mike D’Antoni can’t coach D, Stan Van Guny can’t figure out when to sub guys or how to manage a set rotation, Scott Skiles is a poor communicator, Flip can’t command absolute respect. Yet they’re all considered good coaches.

  • The Philosopher

    Told y’all Mike Brown was a good coach.

  • The Philosopher

    Then, some people who said he has no playbook are now, in fact, saying he DOES have one. Which one is it?

  • JD

    Just sack Mike Brown and make Lebron player coach

  • http://slamonline.com CB 34

    philosopher: You truly are an idiot. Of course Brown has a playbook. He doesn’t just send 5 guys out there without a purpose even if it sometimes seems that way. All NBA coaches run plays. The only time there aren’t plays are when it’s crunch time or in transition. Brown is a good coach as far as defense goes, but on offense, he has to be more creative. The cavs look better and more efficient this year so maybe Brown is evolving but i’m not convinced until i see how they do in the playoffs.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    T-Money, or should we just drop the charade and call you Z?
    Anyway, you made some excellent points in your last post, just wanted to give you props for that.
    Phil Jackson didn’t win a championship every year he coached. Every successful coach in NBA history has had talent. Every one.
    Brown has had problems, last year’s Orlando series was bad news, but like folks have said, he turned a horrendous defensive team into one of the best in the league, figured out how to best use the most uniques player in NBA history, and does it without asking everybody to suck his balls because he’s so wonderful.
    I get mad at dude, but I also respect him.

  • http://philaflava.blogspot.com Teddy-the-Bear

    LOL @ the first 10 comments! Hahahaha, especially niQ.

  • http://philaflava.blogspot.com Teddy-the-Bear

    “T-Money, or should we just drop the charade and call you Z?” I’ve been saying that sh!t for the past year!

  • http://fdjsklf.com Jukai

    He -IS- a fantastic defensive coach. In the same way Mike D’Antoni is an incredible offensive coach. That doesn’t mean either of them should be more than assistants.
    I think really anyone can look like a great coach with an experienced cast. You really only see how good a coach very few times in a game.
    Wow, my ‘a’ key just went out… I’m copying nd psting it… ws gonn right longer post but… guess the bsketblll gods wnted me to sit this one out. This sucks.
    You win this one, Ryn Jones.

  • The Philosopher

    @CB34: I must have missed when you named ten NBA head coaches without a degree.

  • The Philosopher

    @CB34: And, there ARE crunch time plays. You must be like, 8 years old, or something.

  • therighttoremainsalient

    I’ve ot a copy of Mike Browns play book – it’s called “Coaching By Numbers”.

  • Coney Islander

    First ever player to win MVP and Coach of the year in the same season! lol

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Didn’t you argue me down the other day that D’Antoni is NOT a fantastic offensive coach?
    Or did I misunderstand your contention back then because you seemed to be saying he’s not all that hot.