At Sunday’s media availability, LeBron James was asked about Tyronn Lue’s coaching style and what makes him a good fit with the Cavs. His answer: Lue’s ability to succeed and stay calm under pressure.
"I just think it's just his level of calmness no matter what's going on," James said Sunday, per cleveland.com. "He always talks about, at the end of the day, he's already won in life so whatever else happens after this is extra credit. And I feel the same way. That's why I'm able to relate to him so much.”
What James describes here is part of why of the David Blatt-LeBron relationship never really worked. Blatt, at several points during his team with the Cavs, made things harder than they needed to be and seem frazzled. There was known friction between James and Blatt. And while James and Lue don’t always agree, the two can relate and James knows Lue isn’t going to crack. That matters, too, when the Cavs are constantly in the spotlight and being scrutinized.
That calmness becomes more important now, as the Cavs prep to face the Golden State Warriors for the third straight year in the Finals. No team in the league creates problems for their opponent like the Warriors and the Cavs are going to have to adapt and stay calm when things inevitably go wrong. In the last two years, that was Kyrie Irving getting hurt in Game 1 of the 2015 Finals and missing the rest of the series. Last year, it was Kevin Love getting a concussion and the team going down 3-1 before coming all the way back to win the title. Facing adversity, and responding to it, is just a part of basketball at this time of year.
"Throughout the postseason there's so many different emotions," James said, per cleveland.com. "Going high, going low and for players and things of that nature and if you're a coach able to just stay even keeled throughout the whole thing it relaxes the rest of the group."