CLEVELAND - If Cleveland's track record for professional sports coaches proves anything, it's that winning has become vitally important in a city in desperate search of a championship.
In that last 15 months, the city's three major sports franchises have fired coaches, a rarity in professional sports. Cleveland Browns president Mike Holmgren announced the firing of head coach Eric Mangini Monday, which will give the Browns their third coach in four years.
"I understand the feeling. The here we go again feeling is real, " Holmgren said during a press conference at Browns headquarters in Berea.
Former Cavaliers coach Mike Brown was fired at the end of last season for failing to take a team that included Lebron James, the league's reigning MVP; and, Shaquille O'Neal, one of the game's most dominant centers, back to the NBA Finals. Indians manager Eric Wedge was sent packing two seasons ago after failing to take a team with all-star pitchers C.C. Sabathia and Cliff Lee to a World Series.
David Gilbert of the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission said the recent firings indicates how important success on the field or on the court is to the image of the city.
"It says something about our community," Gilbert said.
Holmgren acknowledged how important the search for Mangini's replacement is to ending the cycle of fired coaches.
"I don't want to do this again," Holmgren said. "So I've got to get this one right."
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