Cavaliers lose Potapenko to Grizzlies

Vitaly Potapenko is leaving the Cavaliers' coaching staff to join the Memphis Grizzlies.

There are changes coming to the Cleveland Cavaliers, including the coaching staff.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported the Cavs are losing Vitaly Potapenko, who has been a member of their player development staff since 2013 and is leaving Cleveland to join new Memphis Grizzlies coach J.B. Bickerstaff.

The 43-year-old Potapenko was a first-round draft selection by the Cavaliers in 1996. The rugged 6-foot-10, 280-pounder out of Wright State University played 11 seasons in the NBA, averaging 6.5 points and 4.5 boards a game. He played the fist two seasons of his career with Cleveland.

He worked mostly this season with rookie center Ante Zizic.

Potapenko will join Jerry Stackhouse as members of Bickerstaff’s staff. This is a promotion for Potapenko as player-development is a rung below assistant coach on the NBA coaching ladder.

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