Tom Izzo or Byron Scott: The Cavaliers Will Choose!

Since firing former head coach Mike Brown weeks ago, rumors have circulated over who will become the next head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Everyone from former Indiana head coach Kelvin Sampson to Phil Jackson have been rumored to make Cleveland the next stop on the coaching resume but most recently, the list was narrowed down to two candidates. Michigan State head coach, Tom Izzo, and former New Jersey Nets and New Orleans Hornets head coach, Byron Scott, have emerged as the front runners for the vacant position. The only question that remains is who is the better candidate?

Ever since he took over the Michigan State program, Tom Izzo has become of the most sought out and successful head coaches in the NCAA. Izzo is a recruiting mastermind who has brought several great players to East Lansing, Michigan to put on a green Spartans uniform. Izzo’s approach has made Michigan State into a Big Ten and National powerhouse and opponents fear playing the Spartans.

While Izzo has succeeded in the NCAA, there is no telling how he would fare in the NBA. Izzo has no NBA coaching experience and that could be a concern for bringing him in. Izzo would be set to make $6 million a year with the Cavaliers but whether or not that investment will pay off is still in question. Several college coaches such as Rick Pitino, Jerry Tarkanian and John Calipari have tried making the jump to the NBA with little success. Recruiting college players is a different process then recruiting professional players and there is no such thing as paying NCAA athletes. This adjustment could be something Izzo may not be able to adhere for and bringing him in could be a mistake.

When looking at his NBA experience, Byron Scott has proven to succeed at times as an NBA coach. He helped take a Nets team that was not as loaded with talent to the NBA Finals and helped re-energize the New Orleans Hornets franchise. Scott helped develop Vince Carter and Jason Kidd as players during his time in New Jersey and help solidify and grow Chris Paul into one of the NBA’s best guards. Scott can put a competitive team on the court and with a young team like the Cavaliers, could help players like JJ Hickson and Daniel Gibson grow.

Even though Scott has had success as a head coach, he has also overstayed his welcome in New Jersey and New Orleans. Both teams fired Scott after a few seasons because it seemed as if Scott had lost his effectiveness over a short period of time.  The Hornets struggled early on this season, which led many to believe Scott had lost control of the team and led to his eventual firing. The Cavaliers are looking for a coach who will be there for a long time but with Scott, he seems to last only a few seasons.

Will Izzo be the man to lead the Cavaliers into next season or will Scott be the one to lead the wine and gold? The fans can debate it all they want but it will be up to management who will get the offer and the nod.


~ by jeffrsabo on June 12, 2010.

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