Ex-coach files suit vs. Cava­liers for ageism

The Washington Post Sunday - - SPORTS - EARLY LEAD BY MATT BONESTEEL matt.bonesteel@wash­post.com Ex­cerpted from wash­ing­ton­post.com/ear­lylead

In June, the Cleve­land Cava­liers fired Jim Boy­lan, who was an as­sis­tant to three head coaches and helped guide the fran­chise to four straight NBA Fi­nals ap­pear­ances and the 2016 ti­tle. Boy­lan, who was with the fran­chise since 2013, had re­cently turned 63. At the same time, the Cava­liers pro­moted player de­vel­op­ment coach Dan Ge­riot, just 29, and gave Da­mon Jones, 42, “a more ro­bust coach­ing role,” per ESPN’s Dave McMe­namin and Brian Wind­horst. Mike Ger­rity, 32, was pro­moted from video staffer to di­rec­tor of player de­vel­op­ment. In Au­gust, the Cava­liers hired Terry Nooner, a 40year-old as­sis­tant with the Mary­land women’s bas­ket­ball team, as player de­vel­op­ment coach.

On Thursday, Boy­lan filed a law­suit against the Cava­liers in Cuya­hoga County Court in Ohio, claim­ing age dis­crim­i­na­tion.

Boy­lan is bas­ing his law­suit, in part, on the voice mail then-coach Ty­ronn Lue left for him in­form­ing him that he had been fired. Team owner Dan Gil­bert and Gen­eral Man­ager Koby Alt­man were named as de­fen­dants.

“Jimbo, what’s up, yo? This is T Lue. I had a talk with Koby yes­ter­day. He does not want to pick up your op­tion. He said it’s way too much money,” the law­suit says Lue told Boy­lan in the voice mail. “They’re not gonna pay that kind of money for three as­sis­tants on the bench. He wants to go younger in that po­si­tion and, you know, find some­body who’s a grinder and younger in that po­si­tion. And he said he does not want to pick the op­tion up for I guess it’s 500 or — I’m not sure. He said five some­thing. And he just said it’s too much money, he said, so we’ll be pay­ing [then-as­sis­tants Mike Longabardi and Larry Drew]. So he just said he wanted to go younger at that po­si­tion, and he does not want to pick up the op­tion.”

Lue went on to thank Boy­lan “for ev­ery­thing you’ve given to me” and said he hates “to see this s--- end like this.”

The law­suit says Boy­lan then had a con­ver­sa­tion with Alt­man, who told Boy­lan that he and Gil­bert wanted a “younger” coach in the po­si­tion and the “sep­a­ra­tion had noth­ing to do with Coach Boy­lan’s work or job per­for­mance.” It also al­leges “a pat­tern and prac­tice of age dis­crim­i­na­tion across De­fen­dant Gil­bert’s cor­po­rate or­ga­ni­za­tions.”

Gil­bert also is the founder of Quicken Loans, which has been the sub­ject of age-dis­crim­i­na­tion law­suits in the past.

Boy­lan seeks at least $25,000 in com­pen­satory dam­ages.

The Cava­liers fired Lue af­ter an 0-6 start and named Drew, 60, its act­ing coach. A re­quest for com­ment on the Boy­lan law­suit was not im­me­di­ately re­turned.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.