INDEPENDENCE, Ohio -- The Cleveland Cavaliers made a big change with another season falling apart, firing general manager Chris Grant on Thursday. Cheap Kings Jerseys . Grant was fired a day after the Cavs dropped their sixth straight game, an embarrassing home loss to a Los Angeles Lakers team that started with eight players and finished with five. Vice president of basketball operations David Griffin will serve as acting general manager. Owner Dan Gilbert made it clear hes unhappy with what has transpired in a season that began with hopes the Cavs would make the playoffs after a three-year absence. "This has been a very difficult period for the franchise," Gilbert said in a statement. "We have severely underperformed against expectations. Just as this is completely unacceptable to our loyal and passionate fan base, season ticket holders and corporate partners, it is also just as unacceptable to our ownership group." Gilbert also met with reporters at the teams training facility following the announcement. He expressed confidence that the Cavs can show improvement under coach Mike Brown over the final 33 games. Grant was instrumental in the rehiring of Brown, who was fired during his first stint with the team in 2010. Gilbert was asked if Browns job was safe for the rest of this season. "Were going to see Mike Brown succeed this year because I think that hell be able to do good things and I think this team will be able to do good things," Gilbert said. "I think theyre going to look at each other and theyre going to look in the mirror and theyre going to rally." Gilbert also was asked why he decided to change his general manager but not his coach. "Coach Brown has only been here over half a season," he said. "Chris Grant has been here 8 1/2 years. Hes been the general manager almost four years. Theres a lot of talent on this team. I think everybody knows that." Gilbert promised last spring the Cavs would not return to the NBA lottery, but Cleveland is 16-33 and has dropped six in a row -- matching its longest losing streak of the season. The Cavs are 5 1/2 games out of the final playoff spot in the weak Eastern Conference and their only win in the last nine games came over Milwaukee, which has the leagues worst record. "Accountability starts with me," Gilbert said. "I take responsibility for where were at." Grants tenure will be known for not being able to rebuild the Cavs fast enough despite having a slew of first-round draft picks, including two No. 1 overall selections. Grant addressed the teams poor play last week, saying everyone in the organization was accountable, including himself. Grant took Anthony Bennett with the first pick last June and then signed free-agent centre Andrew Bynum during the summer when no other team would offer the 7-footer a contract. Grant was able to unload Bynum in a trade with Chicago for Luol Deng, but the forwards arrival has done little to invigorate the Cavs. Cleveland has been under .500 since the fifth game of the season and the players have been slow to pick up Browns system on both ends of the floor. In a season thats already had too many low moments, the Cavs hit rock bottom Wednesday. Not only did they fall behind by 29 points to Los Angeles, the Lakers played the final few minutes with five healthy players, including one who was allowed to remain in the game after committing his sixth foul because coach Mike DAntoni was out of bodies. The Cavs were booed throughout the game and Brown, who has been unable to come up with any answers to stop his teams skid, benched All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and three other starters in the fourth quarter as Cleveland got back in the game before losing 119-108. The acquisition of Deng last month brought hope the season could be salvaged, but that proved to be temporary. The Cavs went 3-2 on a West Coast trip, but followed that with a 1-4 record on its longest homestand of the season. Cleveland then lost three consecutive road games, including a 31-point rout by the Knicks on national television. Grant joined the organization in 2005 as vice-president of basketball operations/assistant general manager. He was hired as general manager on June 4, 2010. Griffin was hired later that year after spending 17 seasons with the Phoenix Suns, the last three as the clubs senior vice-president of basketball operations. Sam Lacey Jersey . Manager Ryan Nelsen has confirmed Brazilian No. 1 Julio Cesar will be rested for Wednesdays first leg of the semifinal. That opens the door for Bendik, who started 33 games for Toronto last season. Hedo Turkoglu Jersey . LOUIS -- Julius Randle had 19 points and 15 rebounds, Aaron Harrison finished with 18 points and No.NEW YORK -- Joe Sakic has given Nathan MacKinnon another endorsement to be the first pick in the NHL draft, though the Colorado Avalanche are still listening to trade offers. Speaking after the board of governors meeting, Colorados executive vice president of hockey operations explained why the team preferred MacKinnon to defenceman Seth Jones, who has ties to Denver. "We believe Seth, hes going to be a good player, as well, a very good defenceman in this league," Sakic said. "When youre picking No. 1, you want to be able to pick what you believe is going to be the best player in the draft. That was why we made that decision." Sakic and head coach/vice president of hockey operations Patrick Roy have repeatedly singled out MacKinnon as their choice at No. 1. Sakic originally told the Denver Post that the Avalanche would pass on Jones in favour of a forward, either MacKinnon, Halifax teammate Jonathan Drouin or Finnish centre Aleksander Barkov. Sakic callled this a "deep draft" but said the Avalanche have targeted the player theyre taking. Jo Jo White Jersey. He was then asked about MacKinnon. "I think when you watch Nathan play, hes definitely a skilled guy but hes a powerful skater," Sakic said. "He can play a skill game, but he loves going to the net. He loves going to the hard areas, and hes just a tremendous player." The Avalanche front office being so up-front with the stance of MacKinnon over Jones has raised skepticism about possibly trying to drum up a trade. The Florida Panthers pick second and the Tampa Bay Lightning third. Sakic wouldnt say how Colorados approach is affecting trade talks, if at all. "Obviously when you get closer to draft time, you might receive more calls. Im not too sure," he said. "Were very happy and content with picking first, but if we get some calls, obviously well listen. Right now were excited about making the first selection." ' ' '
sixth straight game
sixth straight game