CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – Despite this being his first season as a head coach in the NBA, David Blatt doesn’t like being called a rookie head coach.
“I’ve been a head coach for 22 years. People overlook that too easily and I think unfairly,” Blatt said prior to the Cavs’ match-up against the Golden State Warriors on Thursday.
Blatt is widely considered to be one of the most successful coaches in European basketball history. Yet, because this season marks his first in the NBA, he is still often viewed as a first-time head coach.
“I know I’m the new kid on the block in the NBA,” he said. “I recognize the greatness of this league and the difficulty of this league and the fact that I’ve had to make and still am going through the adjustments that I have to make to coach in this league. But I am not now, nor have I have been for quite some time, a rookie coach.”
His coaching career and accomplishments while in Europe have made him a self-confident individual, even through some of the Cavaliers’ early struggles this season. Despite a stretch that had some rushing to judgement, questioning if the coach was reaching his players and putting Blatt on the hot seat, the 55-year-old coach never felt his job security was in question.
“I feel my position here has been very solid,” he said.
Now, especially after the acquisitions of J.R. Smith, Iman Shumpert, and Timofey Mozgov, the Cavs are playing their best basketball and rapidly rising through the Eastern Conference Standings. Oh, and LeBron James is finally healthy and playing like an MVP candidate.
And no one is questioning Cleveland’s legitimacy as a championship contender.