Sam Amico, who has been all over the Cavaliers story, says the belief is that Griffin wanted to go all-in while Gilbert wanted to hedge so the team was still in decent shape if when LeBron leaves again. Griffin hinted at his own relationship with Gilbert becoming untenable in a statement provided to McMenamin.
- Griffin was paid just less than $2 million annually on a contract set to expire after this month and wasn't promoted after helping the Cavs win the National Basketball Association championship a year ago. However, he has never worked in an National Basketball Association front office before, and it would be asking a lot of Billups to jump straight into the fire as a high-level executive with a Cavaliers franchise that seems to be on the verge of making a major move.
Griffin's departure comes three days before the draft - the Cavs are now without a pick - and on the eve of free agency.More news: Trump's travel ban still doesn't make any sense
Considering Griffin had presided over a wildly successful three-year term in Cleveland, it left many wondering what might be the Cavs' next move.
"Thanks for what u did for the team for 3 yrs!" the tweet said.
Griffin, of course, was relieved of his duties with the Cavaliers before he could pull the trigger on any of these deals.
Four-time league MVP LeBron James, who is expected to become an unrestricted free agent next summer, spoke glowingly of Griffin on numerous occasions late in the regular season and early in the playoffs, as did All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving. According to Wojnarowski, the Cavaliers' front office had been in a "tough spot" this week while engaged in trade talks, "constantly needing to address Griffin's future with rival executives". "Gilbert wanted better communication and more aggression from Griffin as the team licked its wounds after a 4-1 loss in the Finals". Gilbert is also "very engaged" in the Cavs' business right now as they prepare for the draft and field potential trade opportunities, according to the source. With the exit of David Griffin, the hierarchy of the Eastern Conference could change dramatically by this time next year.