You know Tom Penn as the cap guru and former right hand man of Kevin Pritchard in Portland when they were making smart moves. Or maybe you know him as the ESPN television personality who provided some insights into front office thinking for that network after the Trail Blazers let him go.
Now you may soon know him as the next Sixers general manager, according to Ken Berger of CBSSports.com.
Former Trail Blazers executive Tom Penn is a candidate for the Philadelphia 76ers’ day-to-day general manager position under team president Rod Thorn, league sources told CBSSports.com on Sunday.
One of the league’s top experts on the salary cap and intricacies of the collective bargaining agreement, Penn would be a strong hire for the Sixers as they navigate the new labor deal and how it has dramatically affected payroll and planning strategies. Penn interviewed for the job in recent days, sources said, and was seen with Sixers managing partner Joshua Harris Thursday night at Summer League games in Las Vegas.
This would be a good hire for Philly, a guy who is budget conscious and is better on the player scouting side of the operation than he gets credit for. He’s a perfect guy to step into the team president role and have player specialists under him.
The real question right now is can he work well with coach Doug Collins, who has pushed for more power in the organization.
This summer the Sixers have let leading scorer Lou Williams leave as a free agent, and they amnestied Elton Brand. Both defensible moves. But they have brought in Dorell Wright, Kwame Brown and Nick Young. So, the Sixers didn’t get better this summer (especially with Collins saying Kwame could start).
The Chicago Bulls are one of the teams getting a D-League affiliate franchise this season. The Windy City Bulls will play in the suburb of Hoffman Estates, and now they have a head coach: North Carolina State assistant Bobby Lutz.
Via Upside & Motor‘s Chris Reichert:
Lutz was previously linked to the Bulls’ D-League job in July but there was confusion as to whether he would actually get the job. Now, it appears he has. And he has familiarity with the coaching staff, having served as an assistant coach at Iowa State under Fred Hoiberg in 2010-11, prior to going to NC State.
The release of NBA 2K17, the latest edition of the popular 2K video-game series, is less than a month away. Players are starting to get their likenesses in the game, as well as their player ratings, and tweet them out. Magic forward Evan Fournier wasn’t too happy with the way his came out.
Fournier’s countryman Rudy Gobert got in on the fun, too, changing his Twitter avatar to Fournier’s screenshot and encouraging others to do the same. He even created a hashtag for it.
At least they’re having fun with it.
On Friday, the Jazz traded German center Tibor Pleiss to the Sixers along with two second-round picks for Kendall Marshall. The big draw of the trade for Philly was the picks, and Pleiss is not expected to stay with the Sixers, according to Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia’s Jessica Camerato.
Pleiss had a forgettable season with Utah, and the Sixers have a glut of bigs including Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid and Dario Saric. It would have been virtually impossible for Pleiss to crack the rotation, and it’s unlikely another team picks up his contract, which has $3 million guaranteed this season.
As a Jordan Brand athlete, Russell Westbrook is under the same Nike umbrella as former teammate Kevin Durant. But his latest Jordan spot, released Friday, has a very pointed tagline: “Some run, some make runways.”
Given the circumstances, it’s hard to interpret that as anything other than a reference to Durant signing with the Warriors and Westbrook signing an extension with the Thunder.