Double-strand breaks (DSBs), arising from exposure to exogenous clastogens or as a by-product of endogenous cellular metabolism, pose grave threats to genome integrity. DSBs can sever whole chromosomes, leading to chromosomal instability, a hallmark of cancer. Healing broken DNA takes time, and it is therefore essential to temporarily halt cell division while DSB repair is underway. The seminal discovery of cyclin-dependent kinases as master regulators of the cell cycle unleashed a series of studies aimed at defining how the DNA damage response network delays cell division. These efforts culminated with the identification of Cdc25, the protein phosphatase that activates Cdc2/Cdk1, as a critical target of the checkpoint kinase Chk1. However, regulation works both ways, as recent studies have revealed that Cdc2 activity and cell cycle position determine whether DSBs are repaired by non-homologous end-joining or homologous recombination (HR). Central to this regulation are the proteins that initiate the processing of DNA ends for HR repair, Mre11-Rad50-Nbs1 protein complex and Ctp1/Sae2/CtIP, and the checkpoint kinases Tel1/ATM and Rad3/ATR. Here, we review recent findings and provide insight on how proteins that regulate cell cycle progression affect DSB repair, and, conversely how proteins that repair DSBs affect cell cycle progression.