Tommy Sheppard has been dismissed as general manager and president of the Wizards, the team announced in a press release. The move comes after another disappointing season for Washington, which compiled a 35-47 record and failed to qualify for the play-in tournament.
Sheppard, 53, had been with the organization since 2003, starting as vice president of basketball operations. He had served as GM since 2019 when he was promoted to replace Ernie Grunfeld. He received an extension and a promotion to president of basketball operations after the club got off to a strong start in 2021/22.
The Wizards never won more than 35 games in a season under Sheppard’s tenure and they reached the playoffs just once, advancing through the play-in tournament in 2021 before losing to the Sixers in the first round.
“Failure to make the playoffs the last two seasons was very disappointing to our organization and our fans,” owner Ted Leonsis said in a statement explaining the move (Twitter link from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski).
Sheppard’s departure means someone else will handle key financial decisions in what should be an important summer for Washington. Kyle Kuzma and Kristaps Porzingis are both expected to turn down their player options for next season and test free agency, although Porzingis is involved in extension talks with the team.
The new GM will also try to improve on Sheppard’s performance in the draft, as Washington holds the No. 8 spot heading into next month’s lottery.
Pelicans general manager Trajan Langdon and Timberwolves president of basketball operations Tim Connelly are names to watch as the Wizards launch their search for Sheppard’s replacement, tweets Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today.
The front office shakeup won’t affect Wes Unseld Jr., who just completed his second season as head coach, according to Wojnarowski (Twitter link), who hears from sources that Leonsis remains a strong supporter of Unseld.
16 thoughts on “Wizards Fire GM Tommy Sheppard”
Does this mean the vaunted Big 3 of the Wizards is in danger of being broken up?
God, I hope not.
Bradley Beal, the bench, and the teams trainer? I’d hate for that to happen…
They could get super aggressive honestly. They have some assets
Hire me I’ll fix everything
I don’t know if there’s a team in the league that needs a bigger reset than the Wizards, so this is probably a good idea.
They also promoted Sheppard from within, so hiring someone from outside the organization sounds like another good idea.
Connelly jumping ship from Minnesota after one season after the Gobert trade would be hilarious
To me, the Wizards are essentially the Colorado Rockies of the NBA: perpetually mediocre and consistently convincing themselves they’re contenders despite every outsider knowing better. Furthermore, both organizations frequently promote from within
That’s a great comparison actually
A lot of teams could do with a reset including the wizards.
You create this big 3 of Beal Kuzma and KP and don’t even make the play in.
Beal is already paid, Kuzma is going to command a huge contract and KP is next in line.
Like really what’s the point?
Your going to be paying for mediocrity.
Personally Beal is overpaid obviously but he is a good high volume scorer most nights. Strikes me a good robin but needs an elite batman. Outside of scoring doesn’t have that much.
Kuzma to me is a good number bad team guy or good team role player. He’s either going to provide scoring off the bench for a championship calibre side like he did for the lakers or he’s giving you 20+ points shooting 20 shots on a team not making the playoffs like he did this year.
KP we all thought was a good 2 but for various reasons hasn’t been able to do that now at a couple places and is really just a luxury 3.
If you have 2 elite players you don’t need a 3 like Kp you’d rather save the money and have good role player for cheaper. But if don’t have 2 stars then you try compensate by having a really good 3 and your still not good enough, that’s KP.
Aside from the big 3 they also draft terribly and don’t do particularly well in FA either.
If I was in charge I’d go young and try buy young players with potential on the cheap. That sorta second opportunity buy.
Jalen Suggs, James Bouknight, Patrick Williams, Ben Simmons, Jaxson Hayes, etc etc I’d try go for some of these guys and hope you unlock something out of them and they preform well.
The old case of can’t fire the players so have to fire someone…
Grunfield left them in a dumpster fire… Any GM was a lame duck…
Finally the wiz org waking up and smelling the coffee.
Don’t understand why anyone wants to give a big contract to either Kuzma or KP. KP never contributes to winning and is an injury risk. Kuzma could contribute in the right situation but whoever pays him is putting him in a role bigger than he warrants and won’t be a winner.
Ted Leonsis pls change our coach too.. it doesnt make any sense at this point . He’s supposed to be a defensive coach and our team sucked in defense. Pls get an experienced more aggressive coach.
They interviewed him before naming Tommy the GM. I think he wanted more money than Ted was willing to pay. It will be interesting to see who they hire. Unless they have a big turnaround I think Wes is gone during or after next season and the GM will be able to pick his own coach.
Maybe this signals a possible break from WSH’s long time method of operation. Maybe not. The WSH mentality has been fairly consistent over the past 40 years. Sheppard was a product of that (not the cause). It was clear from the start that he was more of the same. Even if the owner didn’t know that before hiring him (unlikely), it certainly didn’t take him 4 years to find out. The same owner gave him an extension in the early part of last season.
Only time will tell if this termination should be seen as the act of an owner aspiring to more than being a borderline play-in team, or just one upset that they finished on the wrong side of the play-in line two straight years.
He deserves it after signing Beal to a ridiculous extension. Bad GMs are meant to be fired.