Cavaliers ‘fire head coach JB Bickerstaff’ following NBA playoff defeat by the Boston Celtics

According to reports, the Cleveland Cavaliers have fired coach JB Bickerstaff.

The 45-year-old led Cleveland to the playoffs in each of the past two seasons, but both runs ended before the finals.

The Cavaliers were recently defeated by the Celtics in the conference semifinals, losing 4-1 to Boston.

And on Thursday, ESPN reported that Cleveland has decided to fire Bickerstaff in hopes that a new coach can bring them closer to a second championship.

The Cavaliers’ only win in the NBA Finals came in 2016. They haven’t won a conference title or division title since 2018.

The Cleveland Cavaliers have reportedly fired coach JB Bickerstaff following their loss to Boston

Earlier this week, it was reported that Bickerstaff and his assistant coaches were still being evaluated, with no promise that they would be back with the Cavs next season.

Back-to-back playoff appearances and a first-round win over the Orlando Magic in seven games worked in Bickerstaff’s favor and he said Cleveland is where he hopes to move forward.

Asked after the season-ending loss in Boston on Wednesday whether he expects to coach the Cavaliers next season, Bickerstaff said, “I mean, nobody told me I’m not. So I will keep showing up until they tell me not to.”

Bickerstaff, 45, had a 170-159 record in four-plus seasons with the Cavaliers. His playoff record in Cleveland is 6-11.

Selection decisions must be made before the end of June, including on All-Star Donovan Mitchell, who has one season left on his contract and a player option for 2025-2026.

If he chooses to stay in Cleveland, he will be eligible to sign a four-year contract worth over $200 million this season.

Mitchell, 27, averaged 26.6 points, 6.1 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game in the regular season. He did not play in Game 4 or Game 5 of the playoff series against the Celtics due to a calf injury.