What could go wrong here? Take the guy who made a number of outright terrible trades as GM and have him advise the company on picking his replacement.
But that’s what is happening in Brooklyn (the new leaders in dysfunction around the NBA). Sunday the organization decided to fire coach Lionel Hollins and re-assign GM Billy King, because the organization needs a new direction according to owner Mikhail Prokhorov.
What is King’s new job? Advise on picking his successor, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.
After his dismissal as Brooklyn Nets general manager, Billy King’s reassignment is expected to include advising ownership on its search for King’s successor, league sources told Yahoo Sports. The arrangement is unorthodox, especially considering King was pushed out of the job by owner Mikhail Prokhorov.
Unorthodox is one word for it.
It’s going to be hard for anyone who steps into the GM job to turn the Nets around. They have a dearth of talent on the roster (10-27 record this season), and as part of the owner-ordered win-now build up when the Nets opened Barclays Center, they don’t have or control their own first-round pick until 2019. The Nets have the cap space to pay free agents, but what elite player is going to want to go there right now?
Wojnarowski mentions one name that has been cropping up all over the league — John Calipari.
One of the major influences in the search process promises to be Nets CEO Brett Yormark, who has remained an immense ally of Kentucky coach John Calipari since Calipari’s late 1990s tenure as Nets president and coach. Yormark has remained a proponent of making a lucrative offer to bring Calipari back to the Nets in a dual president and coaching role, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Calipari reportedly has some interest in returning to the NBA, and it would take the kind of money and power he would get in Brooklyn to lure him. But again, this franchise is far from being competitive again, it is a complete rebuild, and it’s going to take years even if done right (and Prokhorov has not shown to be the most patient of owners). This is not a job that guys with options are likely to take — and Calipari has options, including staying at Kentucky where he is a legend who built a powerhouse.
However, Billy King can talk to him about it.