Larry Drew: Cavs Had a ‘Total Dependence on LeBron’

by November 06, 2018

Larry Drew, the newly-minted head coach in Cleveland, says the Cavs had a “total dependence” on LeBron James.

The team got off to an ugly 0-6 start following James’ departure to Los Angeles this past summer, and Drew admits all of Cleveland is struggling to overcome their LeBron hangover.

Drew, 60, took over for Tyronn Lue half a dozen games into the season and finally reached a deal with the organization Monday night.

Per the NY Times:

“There was a total dependence on LeBron,” said Larry Drew, the team’s longtime lead assistant, who found himself suddenly elevated to the uncertain position of what the Cavaliers called the “acting” head coach when Lue was fired last weekend. “A total dependence,” he said, to emphasize the point.

“I am not just talking about his talent, but the whole presence,” he said. “You could sense it just when he walked into the gym. And when that is taken away, when he is gone, it is like, where do you go? The whole organization feels it, has had to deal with it, even the whole city. And that is the struggle.”

Shortly before the regular season began, a relaxed and confident Lue sat on a bench at the team’s practice facility and spoke about guiding a team — Cleveland without James — far different from the one he had coached to multiple championship finals. “Everything LeBron touched turned to gold for everybody,” Lue said. “Losing a guy like that, it’s tough, but we got to change the culture, and I think we can.”

Could the Cavaliers make the playoffs? “It’ll take some work,” he said then, “but yeah.”

Tyronn Lue: ‘It’s Hard to Replace LeBron James’