One of the reasons that Ty Lue is regarded so highly as an NBA coach is that he was able to run a tight ship with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving.
Having played with the likes of Michael Jordan, Shaq and Kobe Bryant, Lue learned about superstars up close and personal. He understood what drives them to perform the best, and what stops them from doing so.
Most of all, Lue learned the one invaluable thing that every head coach needs to succeed at the highest level. He knew exactly how and when to keep his guys in line and their egos in check. He would never get bullied around by his star players, even though he had LeBron at his disposal.
In addition to empowering his stars on the court, this ability of his will be a great asset in order to coach the Clippers successfully.
When Tyronn Lue blew smoke in LeBron James and Kyrie Irving’s faces
One of Lue’s earliest tests as a man manager game in one of his initial games as head coach. David Blatt had been newly sacked at the time. Many believed that LeBron had gone behind his back to complain to the management, resulting in the Israeli coach’s sacking.
This incident happened a timeout during one of Lue’s first games as a head coach in Cleveland in January 2016. LeBron James and Kyrie Irving interjected to contradict a tactical adjustment. Lue responded, without ire or defensiveness:
“Why don’t you guys play and I’ll coach the f—ing team.”
— K Dubb (@TheReal_KDubb) December 18, 2020
What superstars in the NBA want, above all, is for their teammates and coaches to take responsibility for their roles. The manner in which Lue managed this in his 3-year stint in Cleveland has earned him a runway in the NBA for the foreseeable future.