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Cavaliers Win NBA Lottery

The Cleveland Cavaliers owner’s son, who has a nerve disorder, has struck the lottery again. And the Cavaliers will pick first overall in the 2013 NBA draft on June 27 after winning the NBA draft lottery Tuesday in New York. This will be the third time in 11 years the Cavaliers pick first.

“It’s huge for us,” Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert said immediately after the pick. “For us, it’s about the city of Cleveland and giving them more hope as we build the franchise to the level we want to go to.”

Had the lottery worked itself out mathematically, the Cleveland Cavaliers would’ve had the third pick in the draft. But this time the Cavaliers have hit it lucky again, the kind of luck you would expect to see at an online casino like Gaming Club.

As the Cavs were revealed as the winner, Gilbert, in his traditional bow tie, pumped his fist and grinned at his father sitting in the studio audience with the Cavs contingent that included hip hop artist Machine Gun Kelly, Iron Chef Michael Symon, Cleveland broadcasters and two fans who won contests to accompany the group.

“It’s what’s not to like 2.0,” Nick Gilbert said, updating the memorable phrase he uttered when the Cavs won the lottery in 2011.

The Cavs hope this No. 1 pick will put them back in the playoffs again after a three-year absence, even if there is no obvious top choice.

“There’s a lot of great players up top, but there’s no clear No. 1,” Gilbert said. “For us to have the choice I think is tremendous. It will give us not only a boost this year, but we’re going to put together a young core of guys that are all under 22 years old.

Aside from the Cavs, the big winners on Tuesday were the Washington Wizards, who bumped up four spots and will have the enviable decision of choosing among a group of players that could include Porter, athletic four Anthony Bennett and defensive dynamo Victor Oladipo. For a team that played .500 ball over the last 50 games and already features John Wall and Bradley Beal, those four spots may be the difference between another losing season and a playoff run.

Mike Brown and the Cleveland Cavaliers are getting back together

It was three summers ago that the Cleveland Cavaliers fired coach Mike Brown in a last-ditch effort to persuade LeBron James to stay.

Brown, who coached the Cavs to the playoffs in each of the five seasons he coached them, from 2005 to 2010, has agreed to a five-year, $20 million deal. The Cavs have a team option for the fifth year, which is partially guaranteed for Brown.

Brown will return to the job the Cavs fired him from in 2010 despite back-to-back 60-win seasons. He was the Cavs’ top choice for the job and the only person they interviewed, though they did reach out to former Lakers and Bulls coach Phil Jackson to gauge if he had any interest.

Brown met with Cavs owner Dan Gilbert and general manager Chris Grant this past weekend in Detroit.

A major factor in Brown’s decision to accept the job is his family, which had planned to move back to Cleveland this summer after he was fired as coach of the Lakers early this season. Brown also has a strong and longstanding relationship with Grant.

The Cavs wanted to move fast to secure Brown. Sources told ESPN.com that Brown already had turned down the Phoenix Suns’ coaching position and could have become a candidate for other jobs in the coming days.

Sources say Brown views the Cavs’ position as one of the top jobs available because of the presence of All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and the club’s substantial amount of salary-cap space.

“I’m happy for him, very happy for him,” James said Tuesday before Game 2 of the Heat’s first-round series against Milwaukee. “I think he’s a really good coach, very defensive-minded coach. It’ll be good for the young guys that they have.”

Brown was fired by the Cavaliers after the 2009-10 season and hired by the Lakers before the 2011-12 season. In his first season, the Lakers went 41-25 and lost in the conference semifinals. He was fired five games into this season but had two years and $11 million left on his contract. The Lakers have been informed they would get some relief from the $6.5 million-$7 million they owe Brown over the next two years. It was unclear how much it would be, but it was not expected to the full amount.

 

 

Anderson Varejao needs surgery, could miss two months

Anderson Varejao needs surgery to repair a torn leg muscle and could miss two more months. Varejao got hurt in a Dec. 18 game against Toronto. The injury was initially diagnosed by team doctors as only a bruised right knee, but as his symptoms persisted, more tests were performed and revealed a “longitudinal split” between Varejao’s quadriceps and knee. Also, ultrasound imaging revealed tissue underneath the muscle tear was herniating.

Cavaliers coach Byron Scott is hoping Varejao can return this season. Scott said he has not spoken to Varejao.

“I may just go up to him and give him a big hug and tell him it’s going to be OK,” Scott said at the team’s morning shootaround.

This is the third straight season that Varejao has been sidelined for significant time with a serious injury. He missed 51 games in 2011 with a torn ligament in his foot and 41 games last season after breaking his wrist. One of the NBA’s scrappiest players, Varejao was playing at an All-Star level when he banged his knee last month and went down with what appeared to be a routine injury.

“It’s real tough,” Scott said. “You’re disappointed, frustrated and (ticked) off. You have so many different emotions going through your head, but what can you do? Everybody in this league has to deal with injuries and we’ve had to deal with them for three straight years. You just got to keep playing hard with the guys that you have.”