CLEVELAND – It didn’t take long for newly-named Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue to make a splash in his first full day on the job, and this was even before the Bulls and Cavaliers tipped it off Saturday night.
In meeting with the media pregame, Lue insisted that David Blatt, who was fired Friday, should still be allowed to coach the Eastern Conference All-Star Team in February.
But he wasn’t done there.
He also brought up the fact that a lot of his coaching style was instilled by former Bulls legend Phil Jackson when the two were player and coach in Los Angeles, as well as admitting that the current Cavs roster wasn’t having “fun.’’
“With Phil, I learned how to use poise,’’ Lue said. “He never got rattled. I think having been a player and a coach now, when you’re frantic and up yelling and screaming, it makes your team nervous. Phil would teach and yell and scream in practice. But when it got to the game, he let you figure it out yourself. So I learned a lot about patience.
“I’m worried about getting our spirit right, our spirit together. I think everything else will take care of itself because we have a lot of great players.’’
As far as is comment about not having fun, well Fred Hoiberg knows what that looks like on a roster. The first-year Bulls coach was told what Lue said and was in full agreement.
“It’s important,’’ Hoiberg said. “You go out there, have fun, you play with a swagger. You play more confidently when you’re having fun. And obviously when you’re playing well it’s a lot easier to have fun. It’s the last thing I say before we go out, you know – ‘Let’s go out there and have fun tonight.’ And when we play well we seem to have fun. The last few games we haven’t had much fun out there.’’
A new Rose?
Derrick Rose acknowledged that this year’s team offers up challenges he’s never had to deal with before, forcing him to try and be more vocal. Admittedly, not a position he likes to be in.
“It’s hard,’’ Rose said of being a leader that speaks his mind. “It’s not natural at all. But I think at this point in my career I always try and improve on the basketball side and off-the-court side. I’ve been around my team a little bit more, talking to them, gambling, things like that, just so that when we’re out there we can have that cohesiveness, but it’s not working so just got to come out with another approach.’’
The one positive for Rose is this team still has a second half of the season to fix it.
“I think everything I’ve been through, I think I’m good with my patience,’’ Rose said. “It’s just that if this was the end of the season and we were playing like this, I’d be worried, but we still got a lot more games to play and we can always fix it.’’