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INDEPENDENCE, OHIO – The Cleveland Cavaliers have named seven-year NBA veteran head coach and Cavaliers all-time winningest head coach Mike Brown as the team’s new head coach, Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant and majority owner Dan Gilbert announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts.
Brown, 43, most recently coached the Los Angeles Lakers and was the head coach of the Cavaliers from 2005-10. He has a career head coaching record of 314-167 (.652) which is the 6th highest winning percentage in NBA history among coaches with at least 400 games coached.
“I am more than excited about Mike Brown’s return to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Mike has done nothing but win in this league since he was a first-year assistant many years ago. He is going to instill a much-needed defensive-first philosophy in our young and talented team that is going to serve as our foundation and identity as we continue down the path of building the kind of franchise that competes at a championship level for many years to come, ” said Gilbert.
Brown has won at least one playoff series every full season he has been a head coach in the NBA.
Brown is also the only head coach in NBA history to win the first round of the playoffs every year of his head coaching career (coached five years or longer).
During Mike’s six full years as an NBA coach with the Cavaliers and the Lakers, Brown had the 2nd highest winning percentage (.657%) among all NBA head coaches who were at the helm four years or longer.
In five seasons with the Cavs, he compiled a record of 272-138 (.663). Brown was named the 2009 NBA Coach of the Year by members of the media and compiled a post season record with the Cavs of 42-29 (.592). He led the team to at least the second round of the post season in each of his five seasons, including Cleveland’s first ever trip to the NBA Finals in 2007.
In addition, Brown’s teams consistently ranked near the top of the NBA in critical defensive rankings. Among all NBA head coaches who coached their team(s) 400 games or more during the same period of time Brown was coaching:
“Mike is an excellent head coach and a proven winner. He has a deep understanding of what it takes to succeed as a team and that will be integral to helping us reach our full potential, said Grant. “We are fortunate to have Mike back and I look forward to him leading our team to a very successful future.”
Brown led the Cavaliers to NBA-best records in both 2008-09 (66-16) and 2009-10 (61-21). During those two record seasons, the Cavaliers ranked at, or near, the top of the NBA in the majority of all major defensive and offensive statistical categories.
“I am thrilled to return to Cleveland to coach the Cavaliers. The commitment ownership and management have shown in their efforts to build a successful team and organization is deep and I am excited to lead the team forward,” said Brown. “Nothing would mean more to me and my family than to help bring success to this very special community and to all of our committed and loyal fans.”
Mike and his wife, Carolyn, have also played leadership roles in local Cleveland community initiatives including the Domestic Violence Center, the Cleveland Municipal School District, the Cleveland Christian Home and the Shoes & Clothes for Kids program.
Brown is a 1992 graduate of the University of San Diego with a degree in business. He played basketball for two seasons at USD after spending two years at Mesa Community College. He attended high school in Germany at Wurzburg American High School. He and Carolyn have two sons, Elijah and Cameron, and will reside in Westlake, OH.