In quietly interesting news today, Andrew Greif of the LA Times reported that former Cavs coach Tyronn Lue will be joining the Clippers in an informal role, per coach Doc Rivers.
Ty Lue was actually a Clippers assistant coach under Doc before, way back in Doc’s first season with the team in 2013-2014. He was previously Doc’s assistant in Boston from 2011-2013, his first coaching position after an 11 year career as an NBA player.
Ty is, of course, best known for his two plus year stint as the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2016-2018. He made three consecutive NBA Finals with the team, and won the championship in 2016 in the infamous “come from 3-1 down” series against the Warriors. Lue built his reputation as a player’s coach, a guy who could get everyone from rookies to vets on the end of the bench to LeBron James to respect him.
However, while getting along with players is an incredibly important quality, especially in today’s NBA, the moniker “player’s coach” does Ty a disservice. No coach wins an NBA championship without doing quite a few things correctly, and that’s even more true for Lue, who took on the 73 win Warriors team and emerged victorious. He has valuable experience, and having him around the team and giving advice is certainly a positive.
It remains to be seen how long this arrangement lasts, but Lue is very well-respected, and this could also be yet another play at attracting free agents like Kevin Durant or Kawhi Leonard. We will see if Lue’s role grows over time, or if his advising is just a short-lived experiment, but this is definitely an intriguing move by the Clips.
Clippers coach Doc Rivers has brought in former Cavaliers coach Ty Lue to spend time around the team in an informal role, Rivers told the @latimes. Lue will observe and give his thoughts. Lue was first around the team yesterday and is here tonight.— Andrew Greif (@AndrewGreif) December 18, 2018