John Beilein and the Cleveland Cavaliers are discussing plans to mutually part ways this week, just over midway through his first season as head coach, multiple outlets reported Tuesday.
The Athletic reported that Beilein met with Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert on Monday to discuss possible resolutions. ESPN reported the sides are working out a financial settlement that could be done as soon as Wednesday.
Assistant J.B. Bickerstaff is expected to be promoted to interim head coach, as the Cavaliers return from the All-Star break for their first practice on Wednesday and their first game on Friday at Washington.
Beilein, 67, joined the Cavaliers last offseason on a five-year deal, with four years and $18 million guaranteed before a team option in the fifth year. But ESPN reported Sunday that Beilein was talking to the team about stepping down, amid a trying first season in the NBA.
Beilein had to apologize to the team in January over his word choice in a film session.
He reportedly called his players "thugs" during a meeting at the team hotel in Detroit. Beilein said he had meant to say the team was "no longer playing like a bunch of slugs," intending to compliment his squad for playing faster in recent games.
The Cavaliers are 14-40, the worst record in the Eastern Conference and only ahead of the Golden State Warriors (12-43) in the NBA.
Before moving to the NBA this season, Beilein racked up 571 wins with four different colleges, most recently Michigan. He finished 278-150 with two losses in the NCAA championship game in 12 seasons at Michigan before accepting the job with the Cavs.
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