Mike Brown (basketball, born 1970)

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Mike Brown
Brown coaching the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2008
Sacramento Kings
PositionHead coach
Personal information
Born (1970-03-05) March 5, 1970 (age 53)
Columbus, Ohio, U.S.
Listed height6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Listed weight200 lb (91 kg)
Career information
High schoolWürzburg American
(Würzburg, Germany)
NBA draft1992: undrafted
Coaching career1997–present
Career history
As coach:
19971999Washington Wizards (assistant)
20002003San Antonio Spurs (assistant)
20032005Indiana Pacers (assistant)
20052010Cleveland Cavaliers
20112012Los Angeles Lakers
2013–2014Cleveland Cavaliers
20162022Golden State Warriors (associate HC)
2022–presentSacramento Kings
Career highlights and awards
As head coach:

As assistant coach:

Michael Burton Brown[1] (born March 5, 1970) is an American basketball coach who is the head coach for the Sacramento Kings of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Brown was previously the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Los Angeles Lakers, and most recently an assistant coach for the Golden State Warriors. He is also the head coach of the Nigerian national team.Brown began coaching the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2005. The team reached the 2007 NBA Finals, where they were swept by the San Antonio Spurs. Brown was honored as NBA Coach of the Year for leading the Cavaliers to a team-record and league-best 66 wins in 2009. The Cavaliers won 61 games, again a league-best, in 2010. However, after the Cavaliers lost to the Boston Celtics in the 2010 Eastern Conference semifinals, Brown was fired. Brown succeeded Phil Jackson as the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers in 2011 before being dismissed five games into the 2012–13 season. He returned to the Cavaliers in 2013, but was fired after one season. Brown then joined the Golden State Warriors as associate head coach in 2016; the team went on to defeat the Cavaliers in the 2017 and 2018 NBA Finals, and the Boston Celtics in the 2022 NBA Finals. He departed from the Warriors in 2022 to become the head coach of the Sacramento Kings. In his first year as head coach, Brown led the Kings to their first playoff appearance in 17 years, snapping the longest playoff drought in NBA history. For his efforts, Brown became the first-ever unanimous NBA Coach of the Year award winner and was named to the NBCA Coach of the Year award in 2023.

Early years[edit]

Brown was born on March 5, 1970, in Columbus, Ohio,[2] to a father who served in the US Air Force.[3] He moved with his family to military bases where his father was stationed and spent time in the United States, Japan and Germany during his childhood.[3][4] Brown graduated in 1988 from Würzburg American High School in Würzburg, Germany, where he excelled in basketball and football.[5]

College career[edit]

After studying and playing basketball for two years at Mesa Community College, Brown went on to the University of San Diego, where he played two seasons of college basketball for the San Diego Toreros and graduated in 1992 with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree.[6]

Denver Nuggets[edit]

Brown began his NBA career in 1992 with the Denver Nuggets, where he was a video coordinator and scout for five seasons.

Coaching career[edit]

Washington Wizards (1997–1999)[edit]

In 1997, Brown moved to Washington for two seasons, working as an assistant coach under Bernie Bickerstaff.[7]

San Antonio Spurs (2000–2003)[edit]

In 2000, Brown was hired by Gregg Popovich as an assistant coach with the San Antonio Spurs.[8] He also was the head coach for the Spurs' summer league teams in Boston and Salt Lake City.[9] The Spurs won an NBA championship in 2003 while Brown was on their coaching staff.[10]

Indiana Pacers (2003–2005)[edit]

In 2003, Brown was hired as associate head coach under Rick Carlisle with the Indiana Pacers.[8] He helped lead Indiana to consecutive playoff appearances, including a trip to the Eastern Conference finals in 2004.[11] Brown followed Ron Artest into the stands and was instrumental in getting him back to the locker room during the massive brawl between the Pacers, Detroit Pistons, and Pistons fans at the Palace at Auburn Hills on November 19, 2004.[12] Brown remained with the Pacers for two seasons.[10]

Cleveland Cavaliers (2005–2010)[edit]

In June 2005, Brown replaced Brendan Malone as head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers. It was his first NBA head coaching position. Brown became the second-youngest coach in the league (trailing only Lawrence Frank).[6] When Brown arrived in Cleveland, the Cavs had missed the playoffs in emerging superstar LeBron James's first two NBA seasons and had not made the playoffs since 1998. Under Brown, they won 50 games, made the 2005–06 playoffs, and won their first-round series.[13]

On June 2, 2007, Brown's Cavaliers defeated the Detroit Pistons in the Eastern Conference finals and advanced to the NBA Finals for the first time in franchise history.[14] However, they were swept in four games by his former team, the San Antonio Spurs.[15]

On February 1, 2008, Brown was named the Eastern Conference Coach of the Month for January 2008.[16] In 2009, Brown was named coach of the Eastern Conference All-Star team.[17] On April 20, 2009, Brown was named NBA Coach of the Year after guiding the Cavaliers to a league-high[18] and franchise-best 66–16 record.[17]

The Cavs won a league-high 61 games in the 2009–10 season.[19] However, the team was eliminated by the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference semifinals on May 13, 2010. With this loss, the Cavaliers became the first team in NBA history to win 60 games in back-to-back seasons without advancing to the NBA Finals.[20] Brown was fired on May 24, 2010, due to the owner Dan Gilbert wanting to lure LeBron James back to Cleveland.[21][22] Under Brown's leadership, the Cavs made it past the first round of the NBA playoffs for five consecutive seasons.[23]

Los Angeles Lakers (2011–2012)[edit]

On May 25, 2011, Brown agreed to succeed Phil Jackson as head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers. He reportedly agreed to a three-year deal with a team option to renew his contract for a fourth year.[24] On May 31, 2011, he was officially named the Lakers' new head coach.[25] The 2011–12 season was shortened to 66 games by the lockout that season, and the Lakers were eliminated in the second round of the playoffs.[26]

Before the 2012–13 season, Brown decided that the Lakers would use a version of the Princeton offense.[27] Shortly afterward, the Lakers acquired All-Stars Steve Nash and Dwight Howard, giving them a starting lineup of five former All-Stars with a combined 33 All-Star game appearances (the other former All-Stars were Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, and Metta World Peace, respectively).[28] Although immediately considered top title contenders, the Lakers struggled to adjust to the changes in both system and personnel and were winless in eight preseason games.[29] The team's travails continued into the start of the regular season, with the team losing four of its first five games.[30] Nash had played just 1+12 games due to injury, Howard was playing but recovering from back surgery, and Bryant had been playing with an injured foot and was unable to practice. On November 9, 2012, Brown was fired.[31] The Lakers felt an urgency to win given their aging stars, Howard's pending free agency, and owner Jerry Buss's deteriorating health.[31][32] Brown's dismissal after five games was the third-fastest coaching change in NBA history.[33]

Second stint with Cleveland Cavaliers (2013–2014)[edit]

On April 24, 2013, Brown was rehired by the Cavaliers, replacing Byron Scott as head coach.[34] Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert said that firing Brown the first time was a "mistake".[35] For the first time as a head coach, Brown's team posted a losing record over an 82-game season as his team was marred by injuries and reported infighting in the locker room.[36] On May 12, 2014, he was fired by Gilbert a second time.[37]

Golden State Warriors (2016–2022)[edit]

On July 6, 2016, the Golden State Warriors hired Brown as an assistant coach; he replaced Luke Walton, who departed for a head coaching position with the Los Angeles Lakers.[38] Brown acted as acting head coach during periods in which head coach Steve Kerr was unable to do so due to chronic back pain. Brown led the Warriors to a 12–0 record in the 2016–17 NBA playoffs while Kerr was absent;[39] the Warriors went on to win the championship in five games that year, defeating the Cleveland Cavaliers.[40] The Warriors finished the playoffs with a 16–1 record, the best postseason winning percentage in NBA history.[41] The Warriors went back to the Finals in 2018 and defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Finals for the second straight year. During these two finals he faced off against LeBron James, whom he had coached for five years in Cleveland.[40]

On May 9, 2022, he was the Warriors' acting head coach for Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Memphis Grizzlies after Kerr tested positive for COVID-19. The team won the game to take a 3–1 lead in the series.[42] The Warriors made it to the 2022 NBA Finals where they defeated the Boston Celtics in six games to give Brown his fourth NBA championship as an assistant coach and third championship with the Warriors overall.

Sacramento Kings (2022–present)[edit]

On May 9, 2022, Brown was named the head coach of the Sacramento Kings.[43][44] In his inaugural season, he coached the Kings to a 48–34 record and the team's first playoff appearance since 2006. In 2023, Brown was named NBA Coach of the year, receiving 100 votes and becoming the first coach in history to win the award by a unanimous vote.[45][46]

National team career[edit]

On February 5, 2020, Brown was announced as the new head coach of Nigeria's men's national basketball team.[47][48]

Head coaching record[edit]

Regular season G Games coached W Games won L Games lost W–L % Win–loss %
Playoffs PG Playoff games PW Playoff wins PL Playoff losses PW–L % Playoff win–loss %
Team Year G W L W–L% Finish PG PW PL PW–L% Result
Cleveland 2005–06 82 50 32 .610 2nd in Central 13 7 6 .538 Lost in Conference semifinals
Cleveland 2006–07 82 50 32 .610 2nd in Central 20 12 8 .600 Lost in NBA Finals
Cleveland 2007–08 82 45 37 .549 2nd in Central 13 7 6 .538 Lost in Conference semifinals
Cleveland 2008–09 82 66 16 .805 1st in Central 14 10 4 .714 Lost in Conference finals
Cleveland 2009–10 82 61 21 .744 1st in Central 11 6 5 .545 Lost in Conference semifinals
L.A. Lakers 2011–12 66 41 25 .621 1st in Pacific 12 5 7 .417 Lost in Conference semifinals
L.A. Lakers 2012–13 5 1 4 .200 (fired)
Cleveland 2013–14 82 33 49 .402 3rd in Central Missed playoffs
Sacramento 2022–23 82 48 34 .585 1st in Pacific 7 3 4 .429 Lost in First round
Career 645 395 250 .612 90 50 40 .556


  1. ^ "Mike Brown, Cleveland Cavaliers head coach" (PDF). 2005–06 Cleveland Cavaliers Media Guide. Cleveland Cavaliers. 2005. p. 14.
  2. ^ Dufresne, Chris (May 28, 2011). "Mike Brown, a basketball nerd from the University of San Diego, travels unlikely path to be new Lakers coach". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 20, 2023.
  3. ^ a b Colon, Bailey (November 23, 2022). "How Mike Brown's military upbringing is helping Kings find success". NBA. Retrieved October 20, 2023.
  4. ^ Letourneau, Connor (January 15, 2017). "For Warriors, Brown's Cavs experience is key in scouting them". SFGate. Retrieved October 20, 2023.
  5. ^ "Würzburg American High School WAHS". www.Facebook.com. Retrieved December 30, 2017.
  6. ^ a b "NBA.com Mike Brown". www.NBA.com. Retrieved December 30, 2017.
  7. ^ "2022-23 Sacramento Kings Media Guide" (PDF). nba.com/kings. Archived (PDF) from the original on April 9, 2023.
  8. ^ a b Bramlett, Jimmy. "Lakers Get Cavalier with Head Coach Hire". LAist. Archived from the original on May 9, 2019. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  9. ^ "About". MIT Sloan. Retrieved July 10, 2023.
  10. ^ a b "Cavs hire Pacers' assistant as team's new head coach". Indiana Daily Student.
  11. ^ "Cavaliers Name Mike Brown Head Coach". Cleveland Cavaliers.
  12. ^ "An oral history of the Malice at the Palace - Grantland". Archived from the original on December 2, 2013. Retrieved November 23, 2013.
  13. ^ "Warriors assistant Mike Brown, so connected with Cleveland, now on the other side of Cavaliers rivalry". January 14, 2017.
  14. ^ "Cleveland Wins Upset to Get to NBA Finals". NPR.org.
  15. ^ "Cavaliers remain winless in NBA Finals games coached by Mike Brown". June 5, 2017.
  16. ^ Mike Brown, Byron Scott Named Coaches of the Month Archived October 1, 2016, at the Wayback Machine, NBA.com, February 1, 2008.
  17. ^ a b Windhorst, Brian (April 20, 2009). "Cleveland Cavaliers coach Mike Brown named NBA Coach of the Year". Cleveland Plain Dealer. Retrieved April 20, 2009.
  18. ^ Swartz, Greg. "Remembering LeBron James' Best Moments from First Stint with Cleveland Cavaliers". Bleacher Report.
  19. ^ "NBA playoffs: Boston Celtics eliminate Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James". Associated Press. May 13, 2010.
  20. ^ "Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Boston Celtics – Recap – May 13, 2010 – ESPN". espn.com. May 13, 2010. Retrieved May 26, 2011.
  21. ^ "Cavs fire Brown after 5 seasons, no NBA titles". ESPN.com. May 24, 2010. Retrieved December 30, 2017.
  22. ^ Abrams, Jonathan (May 25, 2010). "With Cavs Out Early, So Is Brown as Coach". The New York Times. p. B11. Archived from the original on May 30, 2010.
  23. ^ Wong, Andy. "Cleveland Cavaliers: Breaking Down Why Mike Brown Is Their Perfect Coach". Bleacher Report.
  24. ^ Broussard, Chris (May 25, 2011). "Mike Brown new Lakers coach". Retrieved May 25, 2011.
  25. ^ Trudell, Mike (June 1, 2011). "Mike Brown Becomes 22nd Head Coach in Lakers History". NBA.com. Turner Sports Interactive, Inc. Retrieved June 1, 2011.
  26. ^ Elliott, Helene (November 9, 2012). "Mike Brown played his game until the end". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on November 10, 2012.
  27. ^ Bresnahan, Mike (September 29, 2012). "For Lakers Coach Mike Brown, pressure is part of job description". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on October 11, 2012.
  28. ^ Heisler, Mark (November 3, 2012). "With 0–3 Start, Lakers Drop Into Panic Mode". The New York Times. Archived from the original on November 5, 2012.
  29. ^ "Lakers lose to Kings, complete 0–8 preseason". ESPN.com. Associated Press. October 25, 2012. Archived from the original on October 30, 2012.
  30. ^ Amick, Sam (November 9, 2012). "Lakers have fired Mike Brown". USA Today. Retrieved November 9, 2012.
  31. ^ a b Beck, Howard (November 9, 2012). "Lakers Fire Their Coach, and Jackson Is on Radar". The New York Times. Archived from the original on January 30, 2013.
  32. ^ "Owner's health factored into firing". ESPN.com. February 27, 2013. Archived from the original on March 2, 2013.
  33. ^ Stein, Marc; Shelburne, Ramona (December 6, 2012). "Sources: Lakers rebuff trade talks". ESPN.com. Archived from the original on December 8, 2012.
  34. ^ "Mike Brown Returns As Head Coach Of The Cleveland Cavaliers". NBA.com. April 24, 2013. Archived from the original on April 27, 2013. Retrieved April 24, 2013.
  35. ^ Helin, Kurt (April 25, 2013). "Cavs owner Gilbert admits mistake in firing Mike Brown".
  36. ^ "Cavs fire Brown for second time in 4 years". May 12, 2014.
  37. ^ "Cavs hire Blatt, foresee 'smooth transition'". ESPN.go.com. June 20, 2014. Retrieved December 30, 2017.
  38. ^ "Warriors Name Mike Brown Assistant Coach". NBA.com. July 6, 2016.
  39. ^ Polacek, Scott. "Steve Kerr Unsure If He'll Coach Warriors in 2017 NBA Finals Due to Back Injury". Bleacher Report.
  40. ^ a b "A timeline of LeBron James' eight consecutive NBA Finals appearances". CBSSports.com. June 10, 2018.
  41. ^ "Warriors (16–1) Record Best Postseason Winning Percentage in NBA History". Bleacher Report. Retrieved June 18, 2017.
  42. ^ Kenney, Madeline (May 9, 2022). "Steve Kerr enters COVID protocols ahead of Warriors-Grizzlies Game 4". The Mercury News. Retrieved May 10, 2022.
  43. ^ "Kings Announce Mike Brown as Head Coach". NBA.com. May 9, 2022.
  44. ^ "Sacramento Kings hire Golden State Warriors assistant Mike Brown as head coach". ESPN.com. May 9, 2022.
  45. ^ Walsh, Erin. "Mike Brown Named 2022-23 NBA Coach of the Year After Ending Kings' Playoff Drought". Bleacher Report. Retrieved April 19, 2023.
  46. ^ "Sources: Kings coach Mike Brown voted NBCA Coach of the Year". ESPN. April 13, 2023.
  47. ^ "Warriors' Mike Brown to coach Olympic-bound Nigeria men's hoops team". February 4, 2020.
  48. ^ "Warriors assistant Mike Brown will coach Nigeria in 2020 Olympics: report". February 4, 2020.

External links[edit]

Media related to Mike Brown (basketball, born 1970) at Wikimedia Commons