4:28pm: Winger is satisfied with his job in Oklahoma City and has turned down the Grizzlies’ request for an interview, sources tell Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
4:18pm: Grizzlies GM Chris Wallace will continue as GM of the team for the “foreseeable future,” tweets Sam Amick of USA Today. The Grizzlies’ search for a GM has “evolved” into a search for a player personnel director, the role Stu Lash held when he acted as second in command to CEO Jason Levien in the front office before both were let go last month, Amick reports (Twitter links). The team has asked for permission to interview Thunder assistant GM Michael Winger for the job, according to Amick. Wallace assumed “interim responsibility” for the Memphis front office when Levien and Lash departed, according to the team’s press release, and today’s news appears to signal that he’s likely to remain in charge of the Grizzlies on a more permanent basis.
Wallace maintained his GM title even as his role was marginalized under Levien, but Amick seems to indicate that he’ll remain in control of the team’s front office in addition to retaining his title. Wallace’s continued employment with the Grizzlies in some form or fashion has long appeared safe, and the mutual willingness of Wallace and the Grizzlies to continue their association even as Wallace spent a year without setting foot in his office supports that. The general sentiment is that whomever the Grizzlies hire as player personnel director will be on a fast track to become a GM, according to Amick, though it’s not clear whether that person would be a GM-in-waiting of sorts for Memphis.
Winger hasn’t drawn much mention in connection to jobs since assuming his role with the Thunder in 2010, though that might have more to do with Oklahoma City’s guarded nature with information. Amick’s tweets indicate that the Grizzlies are vetting other candidates for the player personnel director position, too.