SEPTEMBER 17: The Kings have officially announced the hiring of McNair as their new general manager, confirming that he’ll be responsible for basketball decisions and will report directly to team ownership.
“Monte is one of the NBA’s top basketball minds who has played an instrumental role in building several winning teams in Houston,” Ranadive said in a statement. “I am excited to bring his extensive experience and vision onboard to lead our basketball operations department, and it is my pleasure to welcome Monte and his family to Sacramento.”
Meanwhile, the Kings announced in a separate press release that Dumars has been named the club’s chief strategy officer and will “drive strategy” across several areas of the organization, including both business and basketball operations.
SEPTEMBER 16: The Kings are hiring Rockets assistant general manager Monte McNair as their new head of basketball operations, according to Shams Charania and Sam Amick of The Athletic (Twitter link).
McNair has worked for the Rockets under general manager Daryl Morey for over a decade, having originally been hired to the basketball operations department in 2007.
After initially working as an analyst and spending time with the franchise’s G League affiliate, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, McNair was elevated to a director of basketball operations role in 2013. He became the Rockets’ vice president of basketball operations in 2015 before being promoted to assistant GM in 2018.
Following the dismissal of general manager Vlade Divac, the Kings made Joe Dumars their interim executive vice president of basketball operations, but had been on the lookout for someone to run the front office on a permanent basis.
McNair was one of six candidates identified by Sacramento as the team sought a replacement for Divac. Pelicans GM Trajan Langdon, Nuggets GM Calvin Booth, and Heat assistant GM Adam Simon withdrew from consideration, leaving McNair, Timberwolves executive VP Sachin Gupta, and former Hawks GM Wes Wilcox as finalists.
While we’ll have to wait for an official statement and more details from the Kings, the expectation is that McNair will have the final say on basketball decisions and will report directly to team owner Vivek Ranadive.
This represents the second consecutive year that Houston has lost a top executive to a rival organization. Gersson Rosas left the Rockets to become the Timberwolves’ head of basketball operations in 2019.