With the news cycle starting to slow down somewhat, for the time being, I’m going return to doing the “Daily Link” approach and give you some early morning fodder for discussion, rather than dump a bunch of links into your lap which all say essentially the same thing. If you all don’t like the format, let me know in the comments.
With that said, new Nets GM Billy King was formally introduced yesterday, while outgoing team president Rod Thorn got the rare opportunity to introduce his successor. Say what you will about Thorn, but he’s been class all the way during this process, though I wonder if after some time has passed if we’ll ever get the real dirt behind why he decided to leave so abruptly after Mikhail Prokhorov made it known how badly he wanted him to stay (money? power? clashing with Avery Johnson?).
King, somewhat acknowledging that he’s made some bad moves in his time in Philadelphia, says he’s grown up a little in Dave D’Alessandros’ report:
“I’m wiser,” said the 44-year-old GM. “When I took over Philly, I was 32 years old. I did a lot of listening to guys like Rod, Donnie Walsh. Jerry West and Wayne Embry. I think now I have a better understanding and probably a little more patience. In Philly, we tried to do a lot of things quickly. In this league, if you do some things and it doesn’t work, you’re punished for a while.”
Devin expressed his opinions a little bit earlier in the week, and I’d like to echo and say I’m not wild about this hiring, but it’s also pretty clear that this is Avery Johnson’s team right now and King seems to be a bit of an empty suit if you believe the reports. Whether that’s true or not, in an attempt to be positive on the King hiring, the NBA is a sea full of bad contracts that were handed out by GMs not just named Billy King. In Philadelphia, he took his shot with an undersized headcase as his team’s focal point, and he even got to the Finals one year. You can’t say that about a lot of GMs.