Tyronn Lue admitted he wishes he still was head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers.
“Yeah, I do,” Lue told Joe Vardon of The Athletic after a full 12-second pause to consider the question. “What I tried to build there, I think the culture I tried to set … I thought we could do it together. Koby (Altman) being a young GM, me being a young coach, having young players. I won a championship there, so you have a chance and an opportunity to do something different, and you should have that leeway to be able to go through a couple challenging years. To win a championship and go to the (NBA) Finals should buy you a little time, you would think.”
Lue is now an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Clippers.
Lue believes his firing at the start of the 18-19 season was unwarranted.
“I don’t think it should’ve happened,” Lue said. “When it happened, I just kind of … It puts everything in perspective. You’ve got to continue to keep working, it’s a business – you’ve got to understand that. It was tough. To win the first championship ever in Cleveland history, and then make the finals (the next two years) and then get fired six games in, it’s hard to swallow and it’s tough to deal with. You start thinking about things like what you could have done different or if it was going to happen if you did anything different anyway.
“You don’t see that very often where a coach goes to three straight finals and wins a championship, and gets fired (the season immediately after the third finals), six games into (the season). You probably have never seen it.”