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Cleveland Cavaliers Eyed John Calipari Prior to Kentucky Deal
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Cleveland Cavaliers Eyed John Calipari Prior to Kentucky Deal

Jun 9 2014, 9:10pm CDT | by

The Cleveland Cavaliers were reportedly eyeing Kentucky Wildcats head men's basketball coach John Calipari to be their head coach and president to the tune of a seven-year $60 million-plus deal before he signed his seven-year, $52.5 million extension with the Wildcats last week.

John Calipari was a candidate to be president and head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers prior to signing his extension with the Kentucky Wildcats last week.  This is what Yahoo! Sports' Adrian...

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19 weeks ago

Cleveland Cavaliers Eyed John Calipari Prior to Kentucky Deal

Jun 9 2014, 9:10pm CDT | by

Cleveland Cavaliers Eyed John Calipari Prior to Kentucky Deal Photo Credit: Getty Images

The Cleveland Cavaliers were reportedly eyeing Kentucky Wildcats head men's basketball coach John Calipari to be their head coach and president to the tune of a seven-year $60 million-plus deal before he signed his seven-year, $52.5 million extension with the Wildcats last week.

John Calipari was a candidate to be president and head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers prior to signing his extension with the Kentucky Wildcats last week. 

This is what Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski and Brett Dawson touched on in their June 9 update

"Before finalizing a contract extension with the University of Kentucky last week, John Calipari had gone deep in discussions with the Cleveland Cavaliers on a seven-year, $60 million-plus contract to become president and coach, sources told Yahoo! Sports. 

"Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert had been persistent in his pursuit and kept returning to Calipari in an effort to deliver full control of basketball operations, sources said. 

"Gilbert and Calipari had discussed a package in the range of $8 million-plus a year, sources said, and it wasn't until midweek that Calipari finally rejected Cleveland and fully committed to his seven-year, $52 million extension at Kentucky. 

"If Calipari had gone to Cleveland, the plan would've been for new general manager David Griffin to work with Calipari in the front office, but he would've ceded final decisions on personnel matters to Calipari, sources said. 

"Beyond the considerable length of the proposed contract -- with an annual salary that would've moved Calipari among the highest-paid executives/coaches in the NBA -- Calipari had some intrigue with the infrastructure of the All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and the possibility of the No. 1 overall pick in the June draft. 

"Calipari has remained intrigued about a return to the NBA in the right situation, and it's unclear how well he believed he could've existed with Gilbert, a hands-on owner. 

"The Cavaliers have met with several candidates for the job, including Los Angeles Clippers assistants Alvin Gentry and Ty Lue, ex-Memphis (Grizzlies) coach Lionel Hollins and ex-Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro. Cleveland has pursued Michigan State's Tom Izzo and Florida State's Billy Donovan in the process, too."  

On the other hand, ESPN pegged the Cavaliers' offer for Calipari at 10 years and $80 million: 

"NBA coaching sources have told ESPN.com's Marc Stein that the Cleveland Cavaliers' recent pitch to Kentucky coach John Calipari was a 10-year offer worth nearly $80 million and included the roles of coach and team president. 

"Kentucky on Thursday announced that Calipari has been signed to a new seven-year deal worth $52.5 million guaranteed. 

"Sources told ESPN's Andy Katz that Kentucky's new deal with Calipari was completed in April and that the Cavs' proposal was made within the past two weeks. 

"Sources told Stein that part of Cleveland's motivation to chase Calipari for its job was the belief that hiring Calipari -- who is well-known to be a good friend of LeBron James -- would greatly enhance its chances of convincing the NBA's best player to return to its home state in free agency this summer

"But Calipari, like UConn's Kevin Ollie before him, ultimately resisted Cleveland's overtures. 

"Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert has been highly motivated to recruit a marquee coach to be the new face of the franchise, but Calipari and Ollie are off the market now thanks to the new contracts at their respective schools. Florida's Billy Donovan and Michigan State's Tom Izzo also rebuffed the Cavs during the current college basketball offseason."

Even though Calipari is no longer in the running, former Cleveland Cavalier Mark Price has emerged as another candidate to be the team's new head coach, per The Cleveland Plain Dealer's Mary Schmitt Boyer. 

"Beloved former Cavaliers star Mark Price, now an assistant with the Charlotte Hornets, will interview for the Cavs head coaching position on Tuesday, three NBA sources told The Plain Dealer. 

"With the team's coaching search entering its fourth week since Mike Brown was fired on May 12, Price is believed to be the sixth candidate to formally interview with Cavs general manager David Griffin, joining (Chicago) Bulls assistant Adrian Griffin, Clippers assistant Tyronn Lue and former NBA head coaches Alvin Gentry, Lionel Hollins and Vinny Del Negro. 

"None of the candidates has met with owner Dan Gilbert, and none has a second interview scheduled as of Monday evening, a source said, though Yahoo! reported that Gentry and Lue would be interviewed again. The Associated Press also reported Gentry would have a second interview.

"Price, 50, is one of the most popular players ever to play for the Cavs. Acquired from the Dallas Mavericks on draft day in 1986 for a second-round pick and other considerations, Price teamed with center Brad Daugherty during the most successful era in Cavs history until LeBron James arrived." 

Calipari has amassed a 597-177 (.771) win-loss record in the NCAA head coaching ranks in stints with the Massachusetts Minutemen, Memphis Tigers and Kentucky Wildcats, per Sports-Reference.com. 


2 days ago

Karl Towns vs. Jahlil Okafor: Who's Favorite for No. 1 Pick in 2015 Draft?

Oct 20 2014 6:23pm CDT | Source: Bleacher Report

Two of the No. 1 overall candidates for the 2015 NBA draft happen to be big fellas this year. Duke's Jahlil Okafor and Kentucky's Karl Towns, each of whom fit the profile of your traditional one-and-done freshman, should quickly find themselves in the top-prospect debate once the season gets underway.  And with Okafor and Towns, we're not quite talking about a couple of raw, unpolished centers whose appeal is tied strictly to potential. These guys a ...
Source: Bleacher Report  Full article at: Bleacher Report


2 days ago

UConn basketball preview: Kevin Ollie looks to keep the defending champs rolling

Oct 20 2014 12:24pm CDT | Source: SBNation

The defending national champs are the No. 14 team in our college hoops countdown. Just two seasons ago, Kevin Ollie began his coaching career at UConn with only a seven-month contract in hand. It was an odd period of transition for a proud program that had found stability for nearly three decades in the toughest conference in the country, the Big East, while being led by a legendary coach in Jim Calhoun. When Ollie ...
Source: SBNation   Full article at: SBNation


4 days ago

Kentucky men, women embrace 'Madness'

Oct 17 2014 11:37pm CDT | Source: ESPN.com - College Basketball

Just as Drake appeared to draw the biggest cheers at Big Blue Madness, the rapper introduced Kentucky coach John Calipari and t ...
Source: ESPN.com - College Basketball   Full article at: ESPN.com - College Basketball


1 week ago

Kentucky Basketball: Ranking Wildcats' 5 Most Indispensable Players in 2014-15

Oct 10 2014 6:04pm CDT | Source: Bleacher Report

With a roster as deep as the one that the Kentucky Wildcats have assembled for the 2014-15 season, there's a next man up for anyone who goes down. Big men, shooters, slashers, defensive pests—there's a little of everything in the Big Blue this year. Some Cats, however, are more essential than others. With this many wildly divergent skill sets, there are myriad ways for coach John Calipari to adapt to any loss, but some players s ...
Source: Bleacher Report  Full article at: Bleacher Report


1 week ago

John Calipari Says He Doesn’t Regret Turning Down Cavs Job (VIDEO)

Oct 10 2014 8:30am CDT | Source: slamonline

Kentucky Wildcats head coach John Calipari negotiated a potential gig with the Cleveland Cavaliers this summer, but ultimately decided to return to Lexington. Calipari claims that turning down the chance to coach the NBA’s latest super-team (and its dollars) is just fine with him. The post John Calipari Says He Doesn’t Regret Turning Down Cavs Job (V ...
Source: slamonline   Full article at: slamonline


3 weeks ago

NCAA Basketball Preseason Rankings 2014: Predicting Initial Top 25 Poll

Sep 30 2014 7:03pm CDT | Source: Bleacher Report

If the NCAA tournament is like Christmas for college basketball fans, then the release of the initial Top 25 rankings are the equivalent of the first decorations and holiday music in the stores. It may not be the real thing quite yet, but it reminds us of what we are so excited about in the first place. The 2014-15 season is right around the corner, and some of the blue-blood programs in the country are stacked with talent. Teams like Duke, Nort ...
Source: Bleacher Report  Full article at: Bleacher Report


3 weeks ago

Mitch Kupchak Analyzes Lakers Rookie Julius Randle (VIDEO)

Sep 29 2014 11:53am CDT | Source: lakersnation

Some have high expectations for the Lakers number seven pick in the 2014 NBA draft, power forward out of Kentucky, Julius Randle. Randle’s former coach John Calipari recently said he expects him to be in the mix for Rookie of the Year. Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak low ...
Source: lakersnation   Full article at: lakersnation


3 weeks ago

Why top college basketball recruits sign late

Sep 25 2014 11:08am CDT | Source: SBNation

The higher the ranking, the more power a player has. About six weeks before national signing day, the most touted college basketball recruits in the class of 2015 are flying off the board at a startling rate. Exactly two-thirds of Scout's top 100 prospects have already given a verbal commitment, with Matt McQuaid (Michigan State), Jalen Coleman-Lands (Illinois) and Bryant Crawford (Wake Forest) becoming the latest rec ...
Source: SBNation   Full article at: SBNation


4 weeks ago

Mike Krzyzewski and Jim Boheim Fire Back at Team USA Critics

Sep 19 2014 1:15pm CDT | Source: slamonline

A minor firestorm erupted over USA Basketball and its head coach Mike Krzyzewski following the recent gold medal triumph at the FIBA Basketball World Cup. Yahoo! Sports accused Krzyzewski and other college coaches on his staff of using the program as little more than a recruiting tool for the nation’s best high school talent. Coach K and Jim Boheim (a Team USA assistant) both downplayed the allegations, and claimed that the national hoops program doe ...
Source: slamonline   Full article at: slamonline


5 weeks ago

The players can't be ignored when discussing FIBA reform

Sep 15 2014 9:29am CDT | Source: SBNation

The problem with the argument that top players are merely pawns to heighten Mike Krzyzewski's visibility during the FIBA World Cup: the players themselves don't see it that way. On the occasion of Team USA trouncing Serbia on its way to FIBA World Cup gold on Sunday, Yahoo!'s Adrian Wojnarowski wrote a strong, pointed column calling for the end of NBA veterans in internation ...
Source: SBNation   Full article at: SBNation


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Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.


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