Owners around the league pressured the NBA to put the brakes on Philadelphia’s aggressive rebuilding plan, as Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com reported and as we passed along Monday night, and that indeed played a role in the hiring of Jerry Colangelo, Windhorst writes. The owners were upset with the Sixers, a large market team with a storied history, as many of the games that featured Philadelphia as the visitor have been among the most lightly attended all season, sources told Windhorst. People who know Colangelo, who joined the Sixers to find a new challenge after his plans for a new Team USA practice facility fell through, believe he’ll have major influence on the Sixers going forward, despite owner Josh Harris’ remark that radical changes to the team’s process aren’t to be expected. Colangelo is notorious for negotiating favorable deals for himself, so he probably didn’t come cheaply, an executive said to Windhorst. See more on the aftermath of Philly’s decision to install Colangelo as a special adviser to the owner and chairman of basketball operations:
- Coach Brett Brown was furious amid the spate of incidents involving Jahlil Okafor lately, and Marcus Hayes of the Philadelphia Daily News suggests that the team’s handling of Okafor “might have been the last straw” for Brown if not for the Colangelo hiring. Brown and the Sixers say they are deep in talks on an extension.
- Colangelo pointed to “a void of leadership, playerwise” as he spoke Monday to reporters, including Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post, a comment that would seem to lend credence to Brown’s remark that he thinks the team will give more regard to having veteran players around.
- The Sixers shouldn’t give up on Hinkie’s strategy just yet, since the team is in position to have a viable roster as soon as next season, argues Chris Mannix of SI.com. Philadelphia is in line to feature as many as six additional first-round picks in the lineup in 2016/17, between the return of Joel Embiid, draft-and-stash prospect Dario Saric and the four 2016 first-rounders the team could end up with.
- Colangelo is a coup for the Sixers, opines Bob Cooney of the Philadelphia Daily News, who believes the 76-year-old’s voice will carry more weight than Hinkie’s in the new Sixers hierarchy.