Some rival executives appear skeptical about the Wizards’ available head of basketball operations position, according to a piece from David Aldridge and Josh Robbins of The Athletic.
“I would have a lot of questions I would want to ask,” one executive said, via Aldridge and Robbins, “but the biggest one would be: Are you willing to start over and build from the bottom up? Can you stomach three to four years of struggle in the win column in order to position the team to win (at) a high level in the long run?’”
Another suggested he would be curious about team owner Ted Leonsis‘ overall goals.
“Then I would say, ‘Well, why would you want to set the bar that low?’” he said. “Where is the bar? Is it a moving bar? Does the bar move based on the whims of emotion and how the Capitals are doing? Or the Wizards, do they have their own standard that’s ironclad and high enough where it’s aspirational? What’s the goal? Do we just want to make the playoffs? Do we want to do more than that? Do we want to just make it once or twice? Do we want to have a sustained run? Is competitive longevity important?”
A third executive raised similar concerns.
“I think the owner’s vision is really, really important,” he said. “Everybody wants to win a championship, but are they willing to do what it takes to get there?
“What’s his vision of the current team? And what does he see as realistic? Does he think that this (current) team can win a championship? I know that’s the question that he would have (for me if I were interviewing for the job). He would say: ‘That’s your job.’ But I would want to know what he’s thinking, too.”
The Wizards last made the playoffs in 2020-21, when they finished 34-48. They haven’t been out of the first round in nearly a decade (2014-15).
Today, the roster makeup seems to be a bit of a concern among opposing executives.
“Why has the team been kind of stuck, or mired, in mediocrity for the last decade?” a fourth executive said, via Aldridge and Robbins. “Probably because (they’re) disillusioned to think that Bradley Beal is the player that (they) hope he is, but he’s clearly not. So are you willing to clear the decks? I think that’s an important question. Why haven’t you traded Bradley Beal? Because he’s a good player, but he’s probably the second or third player on a really, really good team, not the guy to build around.”
What would executives from rival teams ask Wizards principal owner Ted Leonsis if they were candidates for the Wizards' head of basketball operations job? @davidaldridgedc and I asked six execs from around the league, and their answers were enlightening.https://t.co/l6vwIBPEjQ
— Josh Robbins (@JoshuaBRobbins) May 16, 2023
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