Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue has yet to sign a new deal since being promoted to head coach.
Per ESPN's Dave McMenamin, Lue is working under the deal he signed when he became the Cavaliers' assistant head coach prior to last season. When he promoted to head coach after Dave Blatt was fired, Lue reportedly agreed to a verbal agreement for a pro-rated $3 million this season, $3 million next season and a team option worth $3.5 million for the following season. Per McMenamin, the Cavs plan to honor at that deal at the end of the season and Lue is expected to remain as head coaching moving forward.
Lue was already the league's top-paid assistant coach when he was added to Blatt's staff in the summer of 2014 with a four-year deal worth a total of $6.5 million. The Cavs and Lue's representatives came to a verbal agreement on a renegotiated deal that would pay him $3 million prorated for 2015-16 and $3 million next season, with a team option for a third year at $3.5 million with a buyout, ESPN's Ramona Shelburne reported in January.
There were no performance standards or stipulations for Lue to meet to keep the verbal agreement valid after the season, a source familiar with the negotiations said.
According to a source close to Lue, he fully expects to be the head coach of the Cavs next season and beyond, no matter what happens the remainder of the postseason. The source said Lue currently has no interest in any of the head-coaching vacancies around the league in Houston, New York, Sacramento or the Los Angeles Lakers, the franchise with which he started his career as a rookie point guard in 1998-99.
The Cavs are on the same page, a separate source told ESPN.com, and fully intend to honor their verbal agreement by finalizing a contract for Lue this summer that will keep him as Cleveland's coach.
Lue, for what is worth, was the league's highest paid assistant prior to being promoted. As it stands, his reported head coaching salary would put him amongst the lower paid head coaches in the league.
Lue's situation, while a bit odd, doesn't seem to be affecting him or the Cavs. And considering Cleveland has been successful under his watch, it's a good thing that the plan is to keep him around. It'll be interesting, though, to see if the rest of the season results in Lue getting a pay bump of some kind.