Sooooooo, this went bad on us. The season has become a painful and awkward stroll down, “I Can’t Wait for this to be a Memory Lane.” Sure, we can get excited about the progressions of Frank Jackson, Cheick Diallo and Kenrich Williams, but even with the joy that comes along with that is some delusion.
We deserved better.
I’m currently potty training a puppy, and it feels like a perfect analogy for the season. I love her; there are so many amazing things about my new dog. However, every turd and puddle of pee in my house is a huge disappointment and blow to my psyche. Mostly, because they now come after some semblance of success — two days in a row with no accidents, but then after spending 35 minutes in the backyard with her, we come back in, I refill the water bowl, I turn around and there’s amazingly three piles of shit staring right at me.
Someone else is potty training. pic.twitter.com/908PMG6w6T— Kevin Barrios (@kevinbforbounce) March 14, 2019
Those two days without shit on the floor were the first four games of the season — and any game that Anthony Davis doesn’t play; the rest are mostly a series of disappoints surrounding some super cuteness and licks on the face.
So instead of agonizing about the Pelicans lost season any further, Chris and I decided to look to the promise of shit free tiles coming our way this summer (and hopefully much sooner for me). Piggy-backing off of our last collaboration and our desire to make the Pelicans a truly New Orleans team, we decided it was time to start giving a New Orleans Index Rating to the potential general manager and coaching candidates; as well as, the potential Anthony Davis trade packages.
Where do you think Becky Hammon or the Clippers offer falls on a made for New Orleans scale of, “Got Shook Down By a Cop Because He Thought the Beignet Sugar in My Beard was Cocaine” to “The Joan of Arc Statue on Decatur Street?”
We hope you want to find out.
New Orleans Index Rating: “Tuesdays & Thursdays” — Hot Boys
I believe that Sam Hinkie is often unfairly typecast as the tank commander. He executed “The Process” in Philadelphia with a somewhat painful, but mostly successful crash and burn and thus cash in on top prospects manifesto. As a result he has become more associated with tanks than Master P. Hinkie could be this one trick pony, but I tend to believe he’s a a really smart guy who can build a team in many different ways — assessing each situation and doing the right thing for that market and state of the roster.
Still, should the Pelicans hire Hinkie I would think that it would be a signal of a tear down to reconstruct — hence his index rating, “Tuesdays & Thursdays.” This Hot Boys classic is set over the most Nintendo beat outside of DJ Jubilee’s, “Do the Mario” or any scene in bird’s-eye-view scrolling role-playing game. “Tuesdays & Thursdays” is a public service announcement to keep off the block on those two days of the week as that’s when NOPD engages in warrant sweeps. If the Pels let Hinkie run the show, they will be like everyone that heeds the Hot Boys advice and be hidden away from the public during the week’s marquee showcase days on NBATV and TNT.
New Orleans Index Rating: The Starbucks on Elysian Fields and N. Rampart
In June of 2016, Dell Demps and the New Orleans Pelicans front office became a diorama for what has been happening in the city since Hurricane Katrina changed the landscape — it was gentrified. Like many of the young white entrepreneurs that moved in after the storm with their non-profits and confusing start-ups, it was kind of unclear what Danny Ferry’s job was. We were merely told in a press release that Ferry was hired as a special advisor.
“I am excited to announce Danny Ferry has accepted our offer to join the New Orleans Pelicans basketball operations staff as a special advisor,” said Demps. “Danny’s experience, insight and achievements will be a welcomed addition to the Pelicans as we continue our quest to improve the team.”
As we all know now, his presence allowed the Pelicans to push Dell Demps out over the All-Star Break and have Ferry AirBNBing Dell’s desk for the time being.
Ferry, like Starbucks, is fine to fill a void, but both certainly come with issues — some of that may be hard to forgive for a southern mostly black city. That new Starbucks in the Marigny is a monument to the plague of AirBNB. In a neighborhood where you could be blindfolded and spun 5,400 degrees and still accidentally stumble into a fantastic and homegrown coffee shop, that watered down sugar-infused Applebee’s of the coffee world is there not to support the local community but to give those tourists whose AirBNBs are driving up rents and driving out residents a culture deficient latte that is serviceable and familiar. Ferry is also serviceable and familiar, a safe bet in some sense as you know what to expect from him having had him in house for short-term visits for almost 3 years now.
After draft dodging the Clippers to play for Messaggero in the Italian League, Ferry carved out an impressively long 13-year playing career in the NBA with the Cleveland Cavaliers and San Antonio Spurs. Upon retirement, he joined the Spurs front office before becoming the Cavs’ GM in 2005. Having LeBron James on the roster made some of Ferry’s poor to mediocre transactions seem passable. I mean, look at those rosters and you’d be hard pressed to say Ferry did a better job than Dell at putting quality around LeBron — but the Cavs would make it to the Eastern Conference Finals, the NBA Finals and had the league’s best record two years in a row during his tenure, all of which was fueled by the star power and name brand of LeBron James.
However, after a short return stint to the San Antonio Spurs, Ferry became the President of Basketball Operations and general manager of the Atlanta Hawks. He did his best work in Atlanta, but it is also where he earned a stain that may make him a hard sell to city with our ethnic makeup. The Hawks made the playoffs every year during his tenure. Ferry also made some great coaching hires like Mike Budenholzer and Kenny Atkinson. Despite being on a leave of absence in 2014-15, Ferry’s hand-built roster sent all five starters to that All-Star game edition and the team finished with 60 wins plus a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals.
The problem is that leave of absence stems from Danny Ferry reading a scouting report on Luol Deng, which contained inflammatory and racist remarks about Deng’s African heritage. After an investigation, Ferry was cleared of actually making those statements as it was proven that he was reading someone else’s words. Still, some question why he didn’t edit those out instead of reading them out loud. However, Danny Ferry has had many people defend his character in regards to racial issues, but that doesn’t mean that the stain has rubbed off of him — fair or not.
I try to be as empathetic as I can and analyze how people who aren’t in my situation or from my background feel about issues that may not have a direct impact on my life. Sometimes I wonder if I go to far into my liberal belief system and project stronger reactions onto others outside of my demographic that they may not feel. This projection can be just as bad as being dismissive.
I’m a white man and while I was disturbed by the initial comments the truth is they don’t impact me directly, and that it has become clear that the report was not his words could possibly clear him. However, it took a while for me to accept the rationale that we were given for the Deng quote. I wasn’t thrilled that Ferry was brought in because of the optics. I thought it was a bad look for a team struggling to gain the loyalty of a city with a predominately black population — though, it is also kind of obnoxious of me to assume I know how the community felt about the hiring and now about the potential full-time position. I mean how do you truly understand how people feel if you haven’t lived their experience?
I was just watching an episode of the Netflix series “The Staircase,” in which Michael Peterson, who after eight years in prison, is released to house arrest while awaiting trail following his previous trial being ruled unfair. In this episode, Peterson says something to the effect of (I’m paraphrasing here), “people say, wow you spent eight years in jail, that must have been terrible — and it is, but you can’t understand how terrible until you live it. I am forever different than everyone who hasn’t been to jail.” It’s true, we often pay lip service insinuating that we can understand how a terrible wrong that we’ve never experienced affects a person who has lived it.
Thankfully, I can’t understand what it’s like to even spend a single night in jail so I can’t understand that. The closest thing I can do is relate it to my experience of having a close friend murdered. Before that event I’d see documentaries, movies or news stories about murders and think that I could imagine the pain that the victims’ families and friends were going through, but when my friend Mike was murdered, I had never felt a sense of loss and pain like that. Other people I knew and loved had died and it hurt every time, but this was totally different.
I think it is important to understand that you really can’t understand what a person or group of people are going through when you are removed from the direct impact. Sometimes it’s monumentally more painful than you can ever understand, sometimes it can be shrugged off even if it seems impossible to you and most of the time it is probably a cocktail of emotions and feelings that you can’t even come close to conjuring an empathetic mock up in your mind — especially as white people trying to understand the effects of systemic racism and its triggers. It’s way too complex. We can understand that there are clearly negative effects and identify things that clearly need to change, but we can never grasp the full picture.
In an extremely unscientific survey, I asked my very close friend of 26 years who loves basketball and whose parents moved to New Orleans from Africa how he would feel about Ferry as a GM — his response, “Fuck Danny Ferry forever.”
Now, this is just one person — I didn’t go around asking every black person I knew. I just really wanted to know how he in particular felt as a first-generation American with parents that immigrated from Africa and who is also very knowledgeable on the NBA, and because he’s a person whose opinion I’ve valued since we were 14. Also, I genuinely cared about how it would impact him. It is foolish to say this represents the entire black community in the city, but it is something the team should consider and gauge the temperature of before making their decision (especially considering it will be a bunch of white people making this decision).
Outside of that pockmark, the hiring of Ferry wouldn’t represent a monumental change. It wouldn’t represent adventure, or ushering in a new era. Surely things will be different as Dell Demps and Danny Ferry surely aren’t hive-minded, but it is also at some sense maintaining the status quo. It would be the option to walk by that coffee shop built inside of an old home and covered with concert flyers and local art that could be great or terrible for the safer acceptable level of comfort, quality and familiarity that you find in a prepackaged mass-produced chain you’ve had a relationship with for years.
New Orleans Index Rating: 9 Roses
If the Pelicans were to hire Shareef Abdur-Rahim, he’d become the most versatile small forward they’ve ever had under contract (he has played every front court position in his career).
Tan Dinh is my go-to for Westbank Vietnamese, but 9 Roses is no slouch. It doesn’t have the name recognition of many of the other Vietnamese spots, but you will never be disappointed. We are all hearing names like David Griffin and Mike Zarren championed around the Twitterverse and talk radio, but Abdur-Rahim is another strong candidate that should be considered.
Shareef is currently the president of the G-League, but has personnel experience from his time running the Reno Big Horns and as the director of player personnel for the Kings. This versatility is why I like him most as President of Basketball Operations — he can bring in his experience of dealing with sponsors and business partners in his current role as president of the G-League and has enough personnel experience to be a solid sounding board for a GM working with him. This business and front office experience is a lot like 9 Roses menu in that while they are a Vietnamese restaurant at heart they also have an extensive Chinese menu and they do both well. Hey, if he can make just one move that is the equivalent of the char-grilled shrimp paste wrapped sugarcane vermicelli bowl, sign me up!
**Side note: after you read this and want some 9 Roses, save room for tacos from the Taqueria Sanchez stand that leads into the parking lot, and — when in season — a king cake from Antoine’s just around the corner. It’s a really underrated food triangle.
New Orleans Index Rating: Drive-Thru Daiquiri Shops
In season 3 of The Wire, a Baltimore police lieutenant is increasingly frustrated with the ineffectiveness of the way the mandated war on drugs is policed. He not only sees the ineffectiveness of the tried and true tactics but sees how inefficient the focus on drug crimes is on the overall safety and well-being of the larger community. In a radical experiment he pushes all drug trafficking to designated zones of abandoned houses, where dealers are allowed to deal and buyers are allowed to buy without police interference as long as there is no violence and the dealers stay off of the non-designated corners in the city. It’s fiction, but the idea stems from a very real loophole of a compromise (which he lays out in the speech below) backed up with data that makes actual police work more efficient — the brown paper bag.
New Orleans is unlike most places in America in many ways, but there is one major way that every bachelor and bachelorette party gets very excited about — you can drink on the street. New Orleans has removed the need for the paper bag. However, like every other state, open containers are illegal in vehicles.
Then came along a forward-thinking genius that figured out a Louisiana specific brown bag of a loophole leading to a fantastic new business model: the Drive-Thru Daiquiri Shop. If the drink is frozen and covered with a lid that has not been penetrated by a straw, driving with a 64oz cocktail that is made up of 1 part diabetes and 3 parts regret that could remove paint off of your car is perfectly acceptable. It is normal to us that have lived here for the past 25 years or whenever that law was made, but it blows every single tourist and recent transplant’s mind.
The brown bag, the “sanctioned” drug markets and unmolested lids are analytics at their finest. They are efficient solutions to focusing energy on more important things — removing ineffective policing and policies to focus on more pressing issues, and allowing the evidence provided by experiments to shape philosophy and priority (dumping the midrange for threes and layups). It’s problem solving using data and foresight.
Sachin Gupta cut his teeth in the analytics dense Daryl Morey-ruled Houston Rockets front office sitting across from Sam Hinkie. In January of 2017 Philadelphia Magazine layed out Gupta’s path from a MIT graduate in the fields of computer science and electrical engineering to the guy that invented the ESPN Trade Machine to being given credit for many franchise changing trades for the Rockets and the Sixers.
One such instance was the buildup to the summer of 2010, the year of LeBron, when every team in the league was clearing cap space, convincing themselves that they had a real chance to sign James and turn their franchise around. The Rockets took the the road less traveled, using their cap space to capitalize on the rest of the league’s unrealistic optimism in order to gain additional youth and draft picks, such as Jordan Hill, a future 1st round draft pick, and the right to swap first round picks with the Knicks, pieces which would prove valuable as the team tried to rebound from the devastating injuries to Yao Ming and Tracy McGrady.
That trade, according to those involved with the Houston front office at the time, was the brainchild of Gupta. Over the years this would prove to be Gupta’s forte, even more so than the comfort level with statistics that got him in the door....
...Perhaps no trade exemplifies an organizational philosophy, and creativity in using their unique cap situation to their advantage to “create luck”, better than the trade with the Sacramento Kings. The trade brought in Nik Stauskas, Carl Landry, Jason Thompson, the right to swap draft picks (at the Sixers’ discretion) in both the 2016 and 2017 drafts, as well as a future draft pick from the Sacramento Kings, which will now end up conveying as an unprotected pick in 2019. The going rate? The 47th and 60th picks in the 2015 draft and the ability to adsorb the contracts of Stauskas, Landry, and Thompson...
...Gupta was more often than not at the forefront of trade activity with the Sixers, constantly brainstorming trade ideas and with an uncanny ability to look at the trade from the other side and correctly assess their motivations and ambitions, coupled with a deep understanding of the collective bargaining agreement and a creative mind. Depending on relationships with other team, time constraints, and schedule, Gupta would also, from time to time, conduct at least part of the negotiations himself...
In fact, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the Sixers’ front office proceedings, there wasn’t a trade of significance that Gupta didn’t have his hands in, an aspect of the Sixers’ rebuild even their most ardent detractors would almost universally admit was well executed. “His whole life revolved around that day in February,” one Sixers staffer told me, referring to February’s trade deadline. Those same sources describe Gupta as the driving force behind the Kings’ transaction, a trade which now looks to have set the Sixers up so enviably for the near- and long-term future.
Gupta is currently the Assistant GM for the Pistons but should clearly be a candidate for the Pelicans’ GM job — if not the role of President of Basketball Operations. He brings a very modern approach to understanding the game from an analytics end, but he also is the literal master of the Trade Machine with real life results. I’d sleep easy knowing he was the one orchestrating Anthony Davis’ exit. His knowledge of the CBA and his ability to manipulate it has been praised in league circles for years — much like that frozen drink slinging hero that identified a loophole in the open container law.
New Orleans Index Rating: Studio Be- 2941 Royal St
Trajan Langdon’s name isn’t going away any time soon in regards to future general manager candidates. When framing a comparison for the former All-American however, a small warehouse out of the Bywater neighborhood immediately comes to mind more than anything relation to basketball.
We don’t want to ruin the experience of Studio Be if you haven’t visited it already, but it is truly one of a kind. It’s unpolished, the building is far from aged, and it occupies so many different random forms of expression that it’s hard to narrow down any favorites right away. It’s powerful and controls your attention without any real organization that you’re used to in most showings.
But that’s what makes it beautiful.
While Studio Be is a capture of black history, celebration and art, it manages to occupy a plethora of intrigued eyes carrying different shades of color and representing various ethnicities all at once. The personality of this museum takes over any pre-nourished labels, focus of cosmetic structure, or overall size once you’re inside. The uniqueness defeats what is considered traditional.
As for Langdon, even with his highest ranking being elected as assistant GM for the Brooklyn Nets in 2016, his resume doesn’t impress with overall major experience as an NBA executive. Other candidates have a long list of years inside of a front office serving various roles, while Langdon’s allure revolves around his various stops in basketball as a whole, on and off the court.
These journeys involve being highly recruited throughout his school days both college and in high school, and eventually being an NBA lottery pick. A successful overseas career carried Langdon into how post playing days, as he began with the San Antonio Spurs as a scout, and his next job was a short stint as director of player development for the Cleveland Cavaliers.
That doesn’t sound like a resume on par with some of the candidates Langdon could be in contention with. Until you consider he’s only 42, and you read and listen to the way people talk about him. You throw in the avenues traveled by Langdon throughout his involvement in basketball and you get quite the unique candidate.
Like Studio Be, Langdon’s work is what tells the story in the end. The job he’s done in helping to rebuild the Nets is what deserves the ultimate attention. He may not have a long trail of muddy waters, his edges may not be completely formed yet, but that in itself is a huge part of the masterpiece. It forces you to focus on what’s in front of you, not the surroundings.
New Orleans Index Rating: Parking in the heart of the French-Quarters.
Most tourists when they come to New Orleans must at some point make a trip inside the French Quarter. It’s full of historic food, shops, adult beverages, and various other vacation enhancement activities to say the least. What’s one of the more least desirable adventures involved, however, is the parking. Sure, many will try to, but sometimes a waste of time, gas and energy is all that follows. And then there’s always the possibility that while chasing a spot as close to Bourbon street that is attainable, you’re running the risk of finding quality parking at all. Don’t waste your time driving in circles of intoxicated civilians not caring if you run them over or not.
Mike Zarren absolutely fits this bill.
While being an assistant to Danny Ainge for the Boston Celtics, Zarren has been with the organization for 14 years! To put that into perspective, Chris Paul was beginning his rookie season with the then New Orleans Hornets when Zarren was starting his career as an NBA executive. With that being said, adding Zarren would be quite the desirable hire for a team looking to find stability and make a power move inside their front office. I mean, who wouldn’t enjoy this guy?
I love everything about this!!!— Tomek Kordylewski (@Timi_093) January 17, 2019
I am obviously more like @mikezarren than like @danielrainge while watching the games, especially as exciting as yesterday's battle with the Raptors. pic.twitter.com/raDR08klFZ
The biggest problem is Zarren has already turned down multiple job opportunities in the past, most notably with the Philadelphia 76ers in 2013. And while NOLA may love to have Zarren, so would others, which as previously reported makes NOLA a longshot. Even if he’s interested in having sole possession of management.
One name that will make the rounds in New Orleans regarding the @PelicansNBA GM job.— Fletcher Mackel (@FletcherWDSU) February 15, 2019
And someone who’s sure to impress Owner Gayle Benson and VP Mickey Loomis.
Celtics asst. GM Mike Zarren.
But given he’s passed on Sixers job (and others) he’s an extreme long shot for NOLA.
if Mike Zarren didn’t take 76ers job or Minnesota job, I don’t think he’d seriously consider Pelicans post-AD. I assume he’s GM-in-waiting, taking over whenever Ainge hangs his all-white New Balances up. He’s a local guy and lifelong Celts fan/season ticket holder, remember.— zak (@ZakKondratenko) February 15, 2019
The Pels should for sure take a peek at Zarren even if early reports go against his any mutual interest. But after that first go-around, NOLA might be wise to screech their tires elsewhere.
New Orleans Index Rating: A Zulu Parade Coconut
Similar to Zarren, Troy Weaver has been a loyal, high-ranking organizational figure in one of the best ran NBA Franchises since his arrival. Weaver, however, could arguably have the better resume.
From player development to the evaluation of many areas of talent including NBA draft, free agency, and summer league prospects, Weaver checks all boxes in the scouting department. He also spent time in player personnel/scouting with the Utah Jazz, and was both an AAU and collegiate coach. Weaver soon proved to have some of the best eyes for talent in the basketball world with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Everyone knows the work that Weaver and head general manager Sam Presti have done over time. The example that they’ve assisted the San Antonio Spurs in setting for small market teams has been the blueprint. And if there’s any organization the Pels would be wise to pick from it would be the Thunder, starting with Weaver. It must be noted that he’s also turned down undisputed general manager positions in the past and would seemingly take a strong approach to lure away, even though he’s been rumored to entertain past opportunities.
OKC executive Troy Weaver was No. 1 target for Jazz GM job, but decided to staying w/ Thunder, sources tell Y! He had worked under O'Connor.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) August 6, 2012
Another executive, per league sources, poised to emerge as a candidate to lead the Hawks' revamped front office: Oklahoma City's Troy Weaver— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) May 8, 2017
The Zulu Parade is one of the longest-tenured and respected parades during Mardi Gras season. And catching a coconut is almost the equivalent to winning a Mega Millions drawing — beyond rare. But that doesn’t stop hundreds of people at a time from trying. In a 2015 article by Sheila Stroup of The Times-Picayune, Stroup once explained the importance of the Zulu coconut to her brother: ”They’re the best throw of all, the thing everyone wants the most.”
Does anything describe Troy Weaver any better? As many people line up for a coconut, they’re truly a rare catch and hard to capture. All you can do is hope to be lucky that one slips your way.
New Orleans Index Rating: Lil Wayne Cash Money fallout/Tha Carter 5.
No, we’re not saying David Griffin should ever proclaim he’s the greatest GM alive. When comparing the body of work Weezy has put in as a musician versus Griffin’s time as an executive, there’s not much of a battle. But we’re not comparing careers, we’re comparing most recent work and a certain time frame.
Griffin’s resume involves lengthy stays with the Phoenix Suns dating all the way back to the mid-’90s up until his most recent position with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Griffin has fought his way on and off the basketball floor as he worked for years to climb up various ladders throughout the Suns organization. As for off the floor? Griffin is a living testimony to what faith and perseverance can bring as he is a two time cancer survivor.
As a 2x cancer survivor, I appreciate this tremendously important effort. #sagerstrong. Y’all get the feeling this this is just another Thursday night for @Raptors HC Nick Nurse? https://t.co/bxZ7P6bOb1— David Griffin (@dg_riff) November 30, 2018
Griffin’s departure from the Cavaliers in 2017 due to a contract struggle, however, was one of the more obscure oddities in basketball at the time and still is two years later. Especially when you consider the Cavs were coming off of their third straight NBA Finals appearance and were destined for a fourth.
This just looks comically bad on owner Dan Gilbert's part. Griffin did a lot in a short amount of time for Cleveland— Shane Young (@YoungNBA) June 19, 2017
To compare, Lil Wayne’s on and off again beef with Birdman, Cash Money records co-founder had its own level of surprise. Even without the father and son type relationship, Wayne had stayed loyal to the man he often states “saved his life.” He helped build an empire of his own under Cash Money with Young Money Entertainment. He put forward a tireless work ethic that rewarded Wayne the status of the best at his craft and several awards/platinum records to back up that standing. How could anything ever go wrong?
In Griffin’s case, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert has had a long history of incompetence and head-scratching decisions that include Griffin’s departure since he became the majority owner in 2005. And Wayne’s “owner” real name is Bryan Williams, his time spent at the helm of Cash Money has had its share of controversy, lawsuits, and left several marquee artists stranded, unhappy, and with allegations of being unpaid through business together. Not even “Tunechi” was safe from a future financial headache involving the former Big Tymer.
Dan Gilbert being a bad owner who lucked into a great situation isn’t exactly a hot take or two weeks old.— Ben Axelrod (@BenAxelrod) June 30, 2017
Does any city have two owners as bad as Dan Gilbert & Jimmy Haslam?— Nubyjas Wilborn (@nwilborn19) October 29, 2018
Lil Wayne might be off Cash Money, but his legal battle with Birdman is still ongoing. https://t.co/I0RVEjoz6g— HotNewHipHop (@HotNewHipHop) November 1, 2018
tyga's hardly the only artist who's had issues with cash money or young money – lil wayne was embroiled in a years-long lawsuit against birdman over royalty payments https://t.co/zC0MK4IqPC— Genius (@Genius) September 2, 2018
Maybe the two are more alike than ever imagined.
The Carter 5 album comparison brings the two even closer together as a ton of hype was being put into a project mainly based off of loyalty, historic past work, and absence. Plus the music world simply wanted to see Lil Wayne thrive again after being wrongly mishandled. Once the album dropped, the reviews were high, even with dated work and its share of lapses, but there remained the thought of what could have been in a different, possibly earlier scenario.
Griffin faces a similar battle. He is the most experienced and successful candidate the Pelicans will probably look at, yet some of his best work is dated by today’s critics. And his greatest accomplishment came via a once in a lifetime player in LeBron James, supported by fellow stars Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love, to go with various other role-playing additions.
But during Griffin’s time as the VP of basketball operations after LeBron’s first departure from Cleveland, he failed to grab even a single playoff appearance. That simply cannot be ignored as that was four years (2010-2014) of failed basketball progression and transactions partly under Griffin’s watch.
And what is it that Griffin wants exactly? Are we sure that the Pelicans won’t choose multiple basketball minds versus a solo acquisition?
The #Sixers interviewed former #Cavs GM David Griffin for the vacant GM job this summer, but felt he wasn’t a good fit for their front-office structure, according to an #NBA source. They want to make collaborative decisions instead of a GM who will have the final say. pic.twitter.com/xEXRGLMiTj— Keith Pompey (@PompeyOnSixers) September 6, 2018
For a franchise getting ready to trade their own all-world talent in Anthony Davis, are we sure Griffin is the man for the job? Would he have been better suited for the position with a Pels team that had more time left on Davis’ clock, maybe getting a desperate Pelicans team to anoint him full control? How much can we trust the work of yesteryear from his days in Phoenix in today’s basketball landscape? Either way there are questions to be asked even if it’s not entirely his fault.
In a city like New Orleans, culture smacks you square in the face immediately upon arrival. And it’s as big of a melting pot as you’ll find in America. While some cities are still highly segregated throughout the United States, the big easy provides a different mix of backgrounds that parallels the Gumbo dish that it is famously known for (among several others). Sure, it has many “traditional” areas of an American city, but overall it is riddled with unique flavors any civilian can get accustomed to.
It may lack the size of a large populated town, but the “Big Easy” has a personality that will comfortably make you forget that everything is 15-20 minutes away at it’s furthest. Anything that steps inside of it must reach a certain standard far from regular. The people want a story, adversity, the gritty, and then they’ll sit back and listen to the success. So an index ranking goes beyond the usual status quo of comparisons. The Pelicans should seek their general manager selection following a similar trace.
Stay tuned for part-two of our series where we next, dive into several Pelicans head coaching candidates and see where they fall on another list that should be full of big easy flavor and even better comparisons in a city that never runs out.