Cavs fire Silas
Cleveland, OH (Sports Network) – The Cleveland Cavaliers announced the firing
of head coach Paul Silas at a Monday afternoon press conference.
Silas was terminated along with his son and assistant coach, Steven Silas,
before the team’s practice Monday morning. Assistant coach Brendan Malone
will take over the head coaching duties on an interim basis.
Silas led the Cavaliers to a 34-30 record this season and the team is
currently seeded fifth in the Eastern Conference playoff race. However,
Cleveland has dropped three straight and nine of its last 12 games.
“Whenever you have to make a decision like this it is always difficult,” said
Cavs president and general manager Jim Paxson. “Our feeling is that this team
has not really developed and evolved to the point that we feel it should have
up to this point in the season.
The news comes just one day after the Cavaliers lost a tough game in
Toronto. The Raptors won the game despite a franchise-record 56 points from
Cleveland guard LeBron James.
Earlier this month, the Cleveland franchise underwent ownership changes, as
Dan Gilbert, who is also chairman and founder of Quicken Loans, purchased the
Silas was hired by the Cavs shortly after being let go by the New Orleans
Hornets in May of 2003. Cleveland struggled to a 35-47 mark and missed the
playoffs in his first year with the franchise.
The 61-year-old Silas spent five seasons with the Hornets and is the
franchise’s career victory leader with a 208-155 record. Although the club
made it to the Eastern Conference semifinals two times during his
tenure, it never succeeded in taking the next step.
Silas also had a three-year head coaching stint with the San Diego Clippers
Prior to his head coaching duties, Silas served as an assistant coach with the
New Jersey Nets during the 1988-89 season, before joining the New York Knicks
from 1989-92. He then re-joined the Nets from 1992-95.
Silas also spent two seasons as the top assistant for the Phoenix Suns from
1995-97 before moving to the Hornets as an assistant coach in July, 1997.