Tony DiLeo

Odds & Ends: Union, Turner, DiLeo, Nowitzki

The NBPA has retained Reilly Partners Inc. to help conduct a search for a new executive director to replace Billy Hunter, the union announced today (link via The Associated Press). Steve Mills was reportedly the leading candidate for the position before he accepted the Knicks' GM job this week. According to Brain Mahoney of the Associated Press (via Twitter), the union may want to build a list of about 10 candidates before making a decision. That's far from the only position up for grabs around the league as training camps open. Here's the latest:

  • Evan Turner told reporters at Sixers media day today that he "was ready" to be traded at one point and was just hoping it would be to someplace warm, tweets Tom Moore of Calkins Media (Twitter link). It appears as though Turner was bracing for the possibility, rather than hoping for it.
  • Former Sixers GM Tony DiLeo is set to become a scout for the Wizards, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link).
  • Dallas GM Gersson Rosas indicated today that Dirk Nowitzki could play another four or five years in a Mavericks uniform, as Dwain Price of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram tweets. "The vision for us is we want to maximize Dirk's career here,'' Rosas said.
  • Rosas, who has experience as the GM of the Rockets D-League affiliate, also wants to make the D-League a key component of his strategy with the Mavs, Price notes.
  • Jared Jeffries tells Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld that multiple NBA teams offered him the chance to continue his playing career, but the former lottery pick decided to take a scouting job with the Nuggets that puts him "on the fast track" to becoming a GM. 
  • Three NBA clubs have shown interest in guard Tre Kelley, agent Giovanni Funiciello tells Jorge Sierra of HoopsHype (Twitter link). Kelley is without official NBA experience, but he went to camp with the Thunder in 2009 and the Grizzlies in 2010.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

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Tony DiLeo A Serious Candidate For Nuggets GM

When the Sixers hired Sam Hinkie as their new general manager last month, Tony DiLeo parted ways with the team after having spent more than two decades in Philadelphia's basketball operations department. DiLeo is looking to land on his feet, however, and has engaged in serious discussions with the Nuggets about the team's GM opening, reports Chris Haynes of

According to Haynes' source, Nuggets president Josh Kroenke is pleased with how talks with DiLeo have gone, and considers the former Sixers exec a serious candidate for the job in Denver. DiLeo, for his part, is "steadfast on a return to management," writes Haynes.

Last week, Benjamin Hochman of the Denver Post reported (Twitter link) that Nuggets assistant GM Pete D'Alessandro projected as the frontrunner for the club's GM position, after serving as Masai Ujiri's right-hand man. The Kings have been granted permission to speak to D'Alessandro about their own GM vacancy, so it appears Denver will explore other options.

In addition to seeking out a new GM, the Nuggets are also searching for a new head coach, with Lionel Hollins, Brian Shaw, David Fizdale, and Melvin Hunt believed to be among the candidates.

Berger On Malone, 76ers, Hornacek, Nets

Here’s the latest news on coaching and GM vacancies courtesy of’s Ken Berger..

  • It’s too early to identify a front-runner in the Sixers search, but things sound promising for Warriors assistant Mike Malone.  Philly execs have contacted the Warriors multiple times about Malone, including several conversations with consultant Jerry West.  In fact, the Sixers are consulting players who’ve played under both Malone and Spurs assistant Mike Budenholzer to get a feel for how the two candidates differ, according to one source.
  • To the surprise of some rival executives, the Sixers‘ coaching search is being led by GM Tony DiLeo, whose contract expires this summer. With team president Rod Thorn moving into a smaller role and DiLeo’s contract expiring, rival execs expect the Sixers seek out a new decision maker as well.  In fact, that process has already begun through back-channel conversations, one person contacted on the Sixers’ behalf told Berger.
  • Nets star Deron Williams has been vocal in his support of Jerry Sloan for the job but also has a strong relationship with Jeff Hornacek.  In addition to the Sixers, the former Jazz sharpshooter has attracted interest from the Bobcats, Suns, and Bucks, sources told Berger.
  • The Suns  are in the advanced stages of their GM search and the latest word is that Celtics assistant GM Ryan McDonough‘s is gaining momentum.  Bucks assistant GM Jeff Weltman has been viewed as the favorite in some circles, however, and the Suns also have interviewed Spurs exec (and former Knicks GM) Scott Layden
  • The Clippers are expected to can Vinny Del Negro and Hawks are expected to let Larry Drew go, league sources said.  The Clippers are said to be “exploring all options,” while the Hawks’ decision on Drew’s future is expected “sooner than later,” sources said.  It is widely believed that GM Danny Ferry prefers to install his own head coach in Atlanta.

Tony DiLeo’s Status Uncertain As 76ers GM

Other than the team's search for a new head coach, John Mitchell of The Inquirer notes another lingering issue hanging over the 76ers franchise, specifically the uncertain status of GM Tony DiLeo – whose contract is set to expire in less than two months. Majority owner Josh Harris, who is currently working with DiLeo to find Doug Collins' replacement, didn't seem very commital when asked about DiLeo's future:  

“I believe that we certainly made decisions that we all can learn from last year and things didn’t work out – so everything is on the table…We’re going to be looking at all aspects of the organization in trying to bring a winner to Philly. So that’s the way I would answer that.” 

Last summer, DiLeo was promoted to general manager after Harris' efforts to hire an analytics-oriented candidate – such as Celtics assistant GM Mike Zarren – were rebuffed by Collins, whose opinion was very highly regarded by team ownership prior to this season. Mitchell notes that not having a full commitment to the general manager could have lasting implications on their next head coaching hire, especially if DiLeo isn't retained. The logic behind that is that if a new coach is named and DiLeo is eventually let go, the new GM may not have the same preference for the head coach as the others who made the choice.  

Sixers Promote Tony DiLeo To GM

2:56pm: The Sixers have officially announced DiLeo's promotion to general manager, tweets Michael Preston, the team's director of public relations.

9:27am: The 76ers will officially name vice president of basketball operations Tony DiLeo as the team's new general manager, reports's David Aldridge (via Twitter). According to Ken Berger of (Twitter link), Rod Thorn will remain as the Sixers' president for now, but will eventually be replaced by DiLeo. An official announcement for DiLeo's promotion is expected later today.

The Sixers had been searching for an eventual replacement for Thorn, who is expected to transition into a advisory role with the club, for much of the offseason. We heard last week that DiLeo had emerged as a leading candidate for the GM opening in Philadelphia. Former Trail Blazers assistant GM Tom Penn, Rockets exec Sam Hinkie, and former Hornets GM Jeff Bower were also believed to be in the running, with Celtics assistant GM Mike Zarren having withdrawn his name from consideration last month. Philadelphia also reportedly made an unsuccessful run at Nuggets GM Masai Ujiri.

DiLeo has been a part of the Sixers' organization since the 1990/91 season, holding virtually every position with the team along the way, as Neil Hartman of wrote last week. The longtime Philadelphia exec, who was considered for the Trail Blazers' and Clippers' GM openings this offseason, even briefly served as the Sixers' head coach in 2008/09. Of course, as's John Hollinger points out (via Twitter), the Sixers' current head coach, Doug Collins, essentially serves as the club's "de facto GM," and will remain heavily involved in basketball decisions.

Atlantic Notes: K-Mart, Knicks, Celtics, DiLeo

Among the NBA free agents still looking for work, Kenyon Martin arguably has one of the strongest career resumés. Given his past production, the former first overall pick has "remained steadfast" in not wanting to sign for the veteran's minimum, according to Alan Hahn of MSG Network (Sulia link). A few teams, including the Knicks and Celtics, have K-Mart on their radar, but New York can't offer more than the minimum, and the odds of Boston signing Martin are "slim to none," according to A. Sherrod Blakely of

Here are a few more Atlantic Division notes from Hahn, Blakely, and a handful of other NBA scribes:

  • The Knicks are still considering their power forward options, says Hahn, who cites Louis Amundson, Shawne Williams, and Jordan Williams as a few possibilities. Chris Andersen has "pushed the idea" of signing with the Knicks, but that interest isn't mutual, according to Hahn.
  • Within Blakely's above-linked piece, he answers plenty of Celtics-related questions that he received from Twitter followers.
  • The Celtics haven't ruled out adding another veteran before training camp, but it would almost definitely have to be for the minimum salary, says Chris Forsberg of
  • Jared Zwerling of spoke to Chris Copeland, who is on a non-guaranteed contract with the Knicks, about what he's learned from the team's veteran players during pre-camp workouts.
  • The 76ers should give Tony DiLeo the opportunity to take over for Rod Thorn as the club's general manager, opines Neil Hartman of

Dileo Being Considered For 76ers’ GM Position

John Mitchell of reports that Tony DiLeo is a lead candidate to eventually replace Rod Thorn as the general manager of the 76ers. Dileo, who is currently the team's senior vice president of basketball operations, reportedly impressed the franchise with the role he played in assisting Thorn build the team around Andrew Bynum this summer. Although there is not timeline as to when Philadelphia looks to name a general manager, Thorn's contract is set to expire after the upcoming season where he will then transfer to an advisory role with the franchise. 

Other candidates that had been mentioned for the position included Mike Zarren, former Trail Blazers assistant GM Tom Penn, and former Hornets GM Jeff Bower. In late August, Zarren had withdrawn his name from consideration, and Mitchell also mentions that the team has cooled on Penn. 

Sacks Gaining Support For Clippers GM Job

Clippers director of player personnel Gary Sacks is gaining support from others within the organization to take over the GM job vacated earlier this month by Neil Olshey, reports Ramona Shelburne of Sacks has teamed with Clippers president Andy Roeser and coach Vinny Del Negro to run L.A.'s front office since Olshey left.

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Latest On Clippers GM Search

While the Magic hired Rob Hennigan as their new GM this week, it appears the Clippers will head into the draft without someone to replace Neil Olshey, who jumped to fill the Blazers GM vacancy earlier this month. Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times says no hire is imminent and no candidate has gone before owner Donald Sterling. Team president Andy Roeser, coach Vinny Del Negro and director of player personnel Gary Sacks are jointly handling the draft and free agency until a GM is found. Roeser and Del Negro have had discussions about possible candidates, and Sacks is one of many names the Clippers are considering, according to three league executives who spoke with Turner. Let's break down the rest of the list:

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Woelfel On Bucks, Raptors, Ross, Fournier

As teams continue to host players for workouts in the days leading up to the draft, the Bucks are having trouble getting all the prospects they want to see to come to Milwaukee, writes Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times. Although the Bucks have worked out a handful of big men that interest them, they haven't been able to host Austin Rivers, Terrence Ross, Dion Waiters, Jeremy Lamb, Damian Lillard, and Jared Sullinger. Woelfel suggests some of these players are confident they'll be drafted by the time Milwaukee picks at No. 12, while others, particularly the guards, don't view the Bucks as a good fit based on the team's current roster.

Here are a few more notes from Woelfel's piece, including additional items on Lamb and Ross….

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