David Griffin who previously served as a general manager for the Cleveland Cavaliers came out and said working with James is not an easy task, especially if you have to build a championship contending team around him. Griffin is now working for the New Orleans Pelicas as a executive vice president and in his three years with the Cavaliers he described the whole experience as “miserable”.
In an interview with the Sports Illustrated, Griffin said his job was too stressful and literally killed his joy for basketball despite winning a championship in 2016.
The pressures of annually supplementing LeBron James with a contending roster mounted endlessly. “Everything we did was so inorganic and unsustainable and, frankly, not fun. I was miserable,” Griffin says. “Literally the moment we won the championship I knew I was gonna leave. There was no way I was gonna stay for any amount of money.”
One of the problems that Griffin saw was the fact LeBron was under year-to-year contracts which made his entire situation of getting decent players more difficult. Griffin apparently wanted to do things differently but he didn’t have the necessary approval or the time because LeBron wanted to be in a position to win immediately.
“I didn’t watch the league, and I didn’t love the game anymore. I was so fixated on outcome that I just totally lost my joy.”
Griffin emphasized some of the problems teams that have LeBron usually face and the biggest one is all about taking responsibility and compliments for certain actions. According to Griffin, when LeBron makes a mistake or does something wrong it will be neglected, while on the other hand if he does something good, it will be emphasized to a much larger scale.
“The reason [it’s overwhelming] is LeBron is getting all the credit and none of the blame. And that’s not fun for people,” Griffin says. “They don’t like being part of that world.”
After his job with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Griffin took some time away from basketball operations but eventually landed a job with the New Orleans Pelicans in April. The Cleveland Cavaliers didn’t want to renew his contract, even though it was LeBron James who lobbied for him to stay with the team.