Cleveland Cavaliers Fire General Manager Chris Grant in Midst of Horrific Season

Ryan BothmannSenior Analyst IIFebruary 6, 2014

Jun 28, 2013; Independence, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers general manager Chris Grant during a press conference at Cleveland Clinic Courts. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The season has hit absolute rock bottom for the Cleveland Cavaliers. The team has fired general manager Chris Grant, a league source told, following the team's 16-33 start to the season.

Grant, who was named the general manager in 2010, has worked feverishly to restore the team after the loss of LeBron James in free agency in 2010. For the most part it appeared the Cavaliers had been doing a great job. Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson, Dion Waiters and Tyler Zeller provided the Cavaliers with a young corps of players who looked committed to making the Cavaliers NBA contenders once again.

This season has been nothing short of a disaster though for Cleveland. The team took Anthony Bennett No. 1 overall back in the 2013 draft, and he has been a major disappointment to this point. Many are labeling Bennett as the worst No. 1 overall pick in the history of the NBA.

The Cavaliers also signed Andrew Bynum during the off-season, which appeared at the time to be a very good deal. The contract protected Cleveland from giving Bynum a lot of money up front, but it also gave Bynum the incentive to play well because it would give him the chance to earn more money over the course of his two year deal. The experiment was a failed one though, and Cleveland had to ship Bynum and a number of draft picks away in exchange for Luol Deng.

Things looked bright for Cleveland at the beginning of the year. Now they look as dull as ever.
Things looked bright for Cleveland at the beginning of the year. Now they look as dull as ever.David Liam Kyle/Getty Images

The trade for Deng was a "win now" move by Cleveland. It showed the fan base that the organization was committed to getting this franchise to the playoffs now, and it also gave the fans hope that if the organization showed improvement, it maybe could entice James to return for a cameo appearance this summer.

The complete opposite has happened though. The Cavaliers are worse than ever. It is not Deng's fault, but the system that was already in place when Deng arrived has completely collapsed. Analysts from discuss rumors of players refusing to listen to head coach Mike Brown, altercations between players during meetings and Waiters being kicked out of practice are just a number of the things that have gone wrong in Cleveland.

There is also paranoia from the fanbase that Irving will leave the team in free agency once he becomes eligible in a few years, and reports from ESPN's Chad Ford (h/t SI Wire) have indicated that he wishes to leave Cleveland, even though he has denied those reports publicly.

Last night during the Cavaliers' game against the Lakers, Irving was benched along with most of the starters for a lack of effort as his team as being blown out. This is not the first time though the team has not shown effort in a game. The Cavaliers were blown out by the Knicks a few weeks ago, and according to reports from  New York Daily News' Mitch Lawrence (h/t, it may be because a number of the players were out very late the night before the game partying.

The Cavaliers have clearly lost complete control of their organization, and clearly someone had to be fired.

This is an important time for Cleveland. This was supposed to be the year where this young team finally put the pieces that it had been building up together and make a run into the playoffs. It was supposed to show James why he should return to Cleveland because there is enough talent on this roster to win a championship if you put him into the mix.

The complete opposite has happened though. This team is beyond dysfunctional and something needs to change fast.

Firing Grant may not do any good right now, but it could help in the future. Although things seemed to be going well in Cleveland before, the opposite was really happening.

That young talent is all still here in Cleveland. The Cavaliers can still get James to come back and lead this franchise to a championship, but a collective effort to change needs to start now. Players need to be leaders in the locker room and come together as a team to achieve a goal.

Sure, it's all easy to say. The hard part is doing it on a day-in, day-out basis. Hopefully the Cavaliers can find someone who can bring some cohesiveness to the organization and help the Cavaliers get back on the right track, because Grant certainly was not getting the job done.