Osowski coached for 20 years

CLEVELAND -- Cleveland Cavaliers assistant coach Mark
Osowski has died after he was stricken with pancreatitis. He was

He died Sunday at the Cleveland Clinic, the Cavaliers announced
Monday, and had been hospitalized for some time.

"This is a tragic loss for all of us," said Jim Paxson,
Cavaliers president and general manager. "Mark lived life to the
fullest and he worked passionately every day. He was such a vibrant
and dynamic person to be around. I respected him greatly, as did
our entire organization. He will be missed very much."

Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas, a gland behind
the stomach that secretes digestive enzymes into the small

Osowski had 20 years of coaching experience. He began his NBA
career in 1996 as an assistant coach with the Charlotte Hornets.
Osowski and Cavaliers coach Paul Silas worked as assistants in
Charlotte from 1997-99 under Dave Cowens.

Osowski remained on the coaching staff when Silas was promoted
to head coach midway through the 1998-99 season and continued as an
assistant during Silas' first full season as Hornets coach in

He then coached for three seasons with the Golden State Warriors
before joining Silas' staff in Cleveland.

"Mark had a very positive impact on the players and staff
alike," Silas said. "He touched all of us every day with his
charisma and sense of humor. He was a wonderful friend and one of
the hardest working people I've ever worked with."

He is survived by his wife Kristin-Ann. Funeral arrangements are
not complete.