Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James has been seen taking over team-talks before, and now fresh speculation has surfaced that he is calling plays.
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Cavs coach David Blatt has overcome early pressure to silence the critics and save his job, and Cleveland are now looking towards securing the second seed in the Eastern Conference ahead of the playoffs.
However, whether or not he is entirely in charge of the show is unclear, as ESPN’s Brian Windhorst has revealed that he has noticed on multiple occasions that James will call a play and Blatt will merely relay the message on to the rest of the team to ensure that they know the drill.
“The Princeton offense that David Blatt installed in the preseason, they just threw that out. What typically happens—and this has been happening for like three months now—is LeBron will take the ball, and LeBron will call the play. David Blatt will see what play LeBron calls, and he will repeat it to the team. That happens on a regular basis,” Windhorst said according to Deadspin.
He added that he has lost track of how many times Blatt has said something this year and LeBron has directly contradicted it within 45 seconds.
Cleveland are 48-27 for the season and have been in good form since the All-Star break, so stories such as these, whether true or false, will mean little in the grand scheme of things.
If the team continues to win, then all parties concerned will be happy and the system will work as it is. However, the questions start if they fall behind or even get eliminated early in the playoffs as that will open them up to criticism from all angles.
Blatt is the coach of this team and should be calling the shots, but in contrast it is no secret that Cleveland is LeBron’s world and ultimately everyone else is just living it in.
Having a player undermine your authority must be irritating and degrading underneath the surface, but if it works for Blatt, LeBron and the Cavs, then it will likely continue to be that way.