Former Raytown High School student now an NBA title-winning coach

Posted at 5:55 PM, Jun 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-20 19:23:19-04

On Sunday night, Raytown High School graduate Tyronn Lue coached the Cleveland Cavaliers to their first-ever NBA title.

Lue graduated from the school in 1995 before continuing his basketball career at the University of Nebraska.

After the big win on Sunday, Lue sent text messages to Mark Scanlon, his former high school basketball coach.

"It was like having a relative, like having your own kid do really well," explained Scanlon.

On top of playing 10-plus years in the NBA and being a member of the All-Big 12 team at Nebraska, Lue was a standout guard for Raytown. During his time at Raytown High School, Lue made the All-Metro team and played in the 1995 double-overtime playoff game against Central that many have described as unforgettable.

Scanlon said as a player, Lue was very hard working.

"He was always the first one at the gym and the last one to leave," the former coach said. "His work ethic probably carried through to his coaching too."  

After graduating 20 years ago, Scanlon said Lue is a player he remembers fondly.

"He was really unselfish," Scanlon explained. "He's one of those guys that made everybody else better. He was a natural leader."

Despite all the success Lue has had in the pros, Scanlon said he has not forgotten his roots.

"There's a lot of kids he still keeps on touch with at Raytown," he said. "We keep in contact with him all the time."

Lue's achievements on the basketball court are reaching beyond the sports spectrum. Raytown Superintendent Allan Markley explained that Lue is also serving as an inspiration to current students.

"I think it shows them that it doesn't matter who you are, where you live or where you go to school. Anything is possible," explained Markley.

After being drafted in the first round of 1998 NBA Draft by the Denver Nuggets, Lue embarked on a career that included stops with several teams, including the Los Angeles Lakes, Washington Wizards and Atlanta Hawks.

Lue won two NBA titles as a player on the Lakers in 2000 and 2001.

The title win on Sunday was his first as a coach and the first sports championship for Cleveland since 1964.

"It's just neat to see a guy that's that good of a person and to be that successful," said Scanlon.

The title drought for Cleveland helped come to an end partly because of the efforts from a Raytown High School graduate.



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