Tyronn Lue grew up across the street from the basketball courts in Mexico, Missouri. A town so small, that he pointed out in his Game 7 post game press conference, the arena had twice as many people. Lue never forgot where he came from and neither did the community. Last summer, the town named a street after him and every 4th of July he returns home for a big celebration. You can expect the celebration will be even bigger in just a couple of weeks.
Lue achieved something that has only been accomplished three times in NBA history–a coach taking over a team mid-season and leading them to a championship. His Cleveland Cavaliers, behind an MVP Series performance by LeBron James and a clutch three-point shot from Kyrie Irving late, gave the city of Cleveland their first major pro sports title since 1964.
The 39-year old Lue was overcome with emotion, crying on the sidelines, while other coaches and players celebrated on the court. In his postgame interview, he said his brother told him that’s the first time he had ever seen him cry. Lue remembers the road it took to get him to the top of the basketball world and he reminded those in Mexico that dreams can come true.
Here’s one of three national shoutouts to Mexico from Lue–Larry Brown Sports Vine
Lue finished his High School career at Raytown South and played at Nebraska, before being drafted in the first round with the 23rd overall pick in 1998 by Denver. He was traded to the Lakers and played with seven other teams until 2009. He then entered the NBA coaching ranks as an assistant with Boston and the Clippers, before moving onto Cleveland in 2014 as an Associate Head Coach. On January 22, he was named Head Coach after the firing of David Blatt.