Blatt, who was in his second season with the team, was immediately replaced - and not on an interim basis - by Tyronn Lue, formerly his top assistant.
It was no easy task for Blatt, especially given that his job hinged on James, one of the game's greatest players but also one of its strongest, most dominant personalities. He was previously an assistant coach on Doc Rivers' staff with the Los Angeles Clippers. "I talked to the guys about just being able to focus on the moment and the process. I am proud of what we have accomplished since I have been the Head Coach and wish the Cavaliers nothing but the best this season and beyond". "It was about us changing". Lue signed a 3-year deal to coach the Cavs on Friday following Blatt's firing as a head coach.
Sports, with Lue said to command the respect of the locker room in general and James particularly. "The reward for coaching LeBron is that you get scrutinized. And if I can hold you accountable in front of the team and doing the right things, then everybody else has got to fall in line, fall in place'".
James said Saturday he was not involved with the decision despite the perception of his impact on coaching decisions.
"I've stopped that a long time ago in my career, worrying about what other people think about me or what I influence or what I don't", he said. "The only thing I can worry about is how I can get these guys better prepared and we can play better basketball".
Both knees wrapped in ice, LeBron James walked in a circle, waiting for his turn to speak with a larger-than-usual media contingent.
Halfway through a championship-or-bust season, the Cavaliers are picking up the pieces.
Blatt's dismissal came despite the Cavaliers now leading the Eastern Conference with their record, and after making a run to the NBA Finals last season where they would lose to the eventual champion Golden State Warriors.
The Cavaliers made that clear on Friday by firing coach David Blatt.
The actual GM is David Griffin and he was the one who made the decision to fire Blatt as he convinced ownership that the team was underachieving, according to Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon-Journal.
A source close to James told ESPN's Dave McMenamin that James "didn't know this was coming" before Griffin gathered the Cavs at the practice facility on Friday to inform them that Blatt had been fired.
James told reporters on Saturday he was "surprised and caught off guard" with the news of Blatt's firing and called the situation "unfortunate".
"LeBron plays for this team", Griffin said. Obviously, he sees it from the outside and the inside looking in. "It's how we prepare ourselves every day". He'd like to expand the rotation to 10 players and bring Mo Williams back into it. He talked about playing Williams alongside Matthew Dellavedova and Iman Shumpert to give the Cavs three ball handlers at one time and he'd like to re-establish Kevin Love's presence at the elbow where he was most effective during his years in Minnesota. LeBron has been adamant about having a former player be the team's head coach and the rest of the players feel he is a better fit for the team because he can relate to them better. "There's no sugarcoating what he said".
Lue will make his debut this morning (Singapore time) when the Cavaliers host the Chicago Bulls.