New Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue, who is a student of Phil Jackson‘s coaching style, has no qualms about taking LeBron James to task for any mistakes, a practice that has been well-received by James thus far, Dave McMenamin of ESPN.com writes. “The thing with Phil is he did all of his coaching in practice,” Lue said. “He always held Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal more accountable than anyone else on the team. It always starts at the top and trickles down to the bottom. If you can get the respect of your best players, everyone else will fall in line. That was the biggest thing with Phil, like, in a game he’d let you figure it out and let you play, but in practice he’s coaching.”
As for James’ response to Lue’s methods, the coach told McMenamin, “It’s been good, so far. He understands what we’ve got to do to get to the point we want to get to. It’s not personal. It’s just teaching and correcting. If I can teach and correct him, like I said, other guys will follow in line. We can’t be afraid to do that and hold him accountable.”
Here’s more from the Central Division:
- Pacers coach Frank Vogel expects the team’s roster to remain untouched through the trade deadline, as he said Wednesday, according to Scott Agness of VigiliantSports (Twitter link).
- Spencer Dinwiddie will be with the Pistons after the All-Star break instead of on D-League assignment, coach/executive Stan Van Gundy said, according to Rod Beard of The Detroit News (Twitter links). Dinwiddie said last month that GM Jeff Bower told him he’d be in the D-League the rest of the season. The Pistons recalled Dinwiddie on Tuesday, but that was so their doctors could look at his sprained ankle.“We’ll weigh what’s best for him and what’s best for us. Initially, we’ll bring him back. I’d like to see him now,” Van Gundy said.
- Bulls power forward Taj Gibson believes this year’s Chicago squad has more talent than the one that made it to the 2011 Conference Finals but doesn’t play hard for each other the way the 2010/11 team did, K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune tweets.
- The Bucks coaching staff is pleased with the improvement combo guard Jerryd Bayless has demonstrated shooting the ball from beyond the 3-point line, Matt Velazquez of The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel writes. “He has worked extremely hard at it and put a lot of time into it,” coach Jason Kidd said. “He is not short on confidence, so right now he is shooting the three at a very high level.” Bayless, who is earning $3MM this season, will become an unrestricted free agent this summer.
Chuck Myron contributed to this post.