VIDEO: Colangelo joins the Sixers
For all the well-deserved accolades that have gone to Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Kevin Durant and the rest of the stars on the court, it was Jerry Colangelo who put the shine and sparkle back on USA Basketball.
As chairman of the board, Colangelo is the one who convinced Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski to take over the role as head coach. Colangelo revamped the team selection process, getting the top names to make multiyear commitments. Colangelo’s thumbprints were all over the gold medal Olympic runs in 2008 and 2012 and the World Cup golds in 2010 and 2014.
Now Colangelo is going to tackle some real heavy lifting — the Sixers.
Team owner Josh Harris announced Monday the naming of Colangelo as chairman of basketball operations and special advisor to the managing general partner.
Jeff Zilgitt of USA Today has the details:
The 76-year-old Colangelo, who is also the chairman of USA Basketball and longtime NBA executive, said this opportunity came together in the past week and half.
“When Josh and I started having conversations, it became evident and obvious to me that he wanted something that I might be able to offer this franchise,” Colangelo said. “Quite honestly, what that really means in my mind is, through the experiences I’ve had with franchises in basketball and baseball and USA Basketball, there’s something I can offer, which will be very helpful to the franchise.
Colangelo said he will provide mentoring for GM Sam Hinkie and will make himself available to Harris and ownership group.
“I’m excited about this. It’s nice to feel that there’s someone there who feels you have something to offer at this stage of my life,” Colangelo said.
Harris said Colangelo’s presence does not alter the Sixers’ rebuilding plan, which is centered around capitalizing on high draft picks.
“It positions our organization both short and long term to take advantage of opportunities to improve,” Harris said. “This is not a deviation from our plan, rather it is an opportunity to drive our organization forward.”
The big question is how much power Colangelo will syphon from Hinkie and how it affects “the process” of the Sixers, which has produced nothing but the bottom of the barrel in the standings for a third straight season.