Portland Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen has penned a lengthy open letter to fans that has been posted on Blazers.com. In the letter, Allen offers his thoughts on the season, thanks former coach Nate McMillan, discusses his current leadership role and provides the following update on the team's GM search.
We are now talking with viable candidates and I have already done my first interview. We're moving forward thoughtfully because we must ensure we have the right fit. Ideally, we'd like to have someone in place before the draft and before we decide on a permanent coach, but finding the right executive may take time.
What is the right fit? First and foremost, the GM has to have what I refer to as the"golden gut." The job requires more than an ability to assess basketball talent. It's also about weighing the intangibles, from character to medical issues, and all the risks involved. Almost every NBA draftee, for example, has some injury history. (And those medical histories are carefully reviewed by our topnotch medical team.)
The GM has to be a good fit with the players, coaches, management, and the Portland community. Of course, I'll also be evaluating how the GM will interact with me, as I'm an engaged and active owner and I ask a lot of questions. It's important for me to clearly understand all the facets of what we're thinking of doing, both on and off the court.
At the same time, I believe personnel decisions should come to me as recommendations from the GM and the president. Certainly there are times I've pushed hard in the draft room or free agency, as I did in recent years for LaMarcus, Wesley Matthews, Joel Freeland, Sergio Rodriquez, Armon Johnson and Patty Mills. But with very few exceptions, I expect the team's executives to make the final calls.
Other choice Allen quotes...
-- "This was one of the most disappointing years I've had in my 24 seasons as owner of the Portland Trail Blazers."
-- "The best thing I can say about this season was at least it was short."
--- "One thing we are not going to do is to spend money like there is no tomorrow, and calls to do so just don't make sense. I've tried that path before -- it doesn't work and is not sustainable. We will follow a judicious and sustainable path going forward."
-- "The team is not for sale. I'm working hard to get this team back on track. No offers have been made to buy the team and none have been solicited."
-- Ben Golliver | email@example.com | Twitter