The Pelicans are expected to ramp up their search process for a new general manager next week, sources tell Scott Kushner of The Advocate (Twitter link).
According to Kushner, a search firm has been looking into potential candidates for the job and is expected to provide ownership with a list of five to 10 names soon. Once the Pelicans receive that list, they’ll be able to begin conducting interviews and eventually selecting finalists.
For now, veteran executive Danny Ferry has assumed the GM reins in New Orleans on an interim basis following last month’s dismissal of Dell Demps. While Ferry appears likely to finish out the season, the Pelicans’ timeline for a new hire may put them on track to name a permanent GM early in the offseason. Ferry figures to be a candidate for the full-time job, but if the club goes in another direction, the new hire will likely be tasked with sorting out the Anthony Davis situation this summer.
After Demps’ firing, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Pelicans were hoping to land a “top basketball executive who will take on a more prominent role in the franchise.” Over the last several years, Demps technically worked under president Mickey Loomis, a football executive who is the general manager of the New Orleans Saints.
Although Loomis is expected to remain involved in the Pelicans’ operations, he and owner Gayle Benson appear motivated to hire an executive who will report directly to Benson while Loomis focuses nearly exclusively on football.
Former Cavaliers GM David Griffin and Celtics assistant GM Mike Zarren are among the execs who have been identified as possible targets for New Orleans.