Posted by Royce Young
New Orleans GM Jeff Bower has been released by the Hornets, the team announced Tuesday afternoon . The team said Bower and the Hornets "mutually" parted ways.
Multiple others have put out more details with Adrian Wojnarowski mentioning that the team made the decision 7-10 days ago , but have waited on announcing it because the Hornets have used that time ot identify replacements. As far as early leading contenders, obviously Kevin Pritchard, Danny Ferry and Thunder assistant GMs Troy Weaver and Rich Cho will likely be in the discussion.
But Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman mentions one other candidate. George Shinn's son Chad.
"Chad Shinn, son of owner George, also has been grooming 4 a prominent pos. in the org," Mayberry tweeted . "Chad loves the basketball side & would love GM title. "
So what brought this on? Early indications are that Bower's willingness to shop franchise player Chris Paul caused tension between Bower and George Shinn.
The Hornets have been a franchise in an odd state of transition for the past few years. First, Katrina made them homeless until Oklahoma City temporarily housed them. Then they got really good and made a serious run in the postseason. Then Bower spent a lot of money on guys like James Posey and Peja Stojakovic and NOLA found themselves in some financial distress. Then they fired former Coach of the Year Byron Scott, Bower appointed himself coach and the team missed the playoffs. Which catches us up to today, where Bower is let go.
New Orleans is surely an intriguing place for a high-profile candidate like Pritchard, assuming the Hornets pay up. Any time Chris Paul is already in place as the cornerstone, the job of rebuilding gets a lot easier and more attractive. Just don't try and trade him I guess.