2017’s year of surprises hasn’t come close to being done yet, as former NBA star Elton Brand is making his first steps in the direction of one day maybe becoming a NBA general manager.
In a story first reported by TheVertical’s Sham Charania, the Delaware 87ers officially named former 2x NBA All-Star forward Elton Brand as their new GM.
It seems Brand hasn’t been enjoying the idea of retirement very much, as it was only one year ago that he decided to name 2016 as his final season with the Sixers. The GM opportunity is a step-up from his current position with the organization as a player development consultant under the Sixers’ head coach, Brett Brown.
Brand was given the opportunity after former Sixers Vice President of basketball administration Brandon Williams, who also played the role of the 87ers' GM, recently left to take an assistant General Manager position with the Kings.
Brand’s experience as a former all-star may seriously come in handy in today’s intimate G-League experience. With the tight-knit community relationships the G-League beholds, GM’s are much more likely to have effect on players lives and gameplay. With that said, Brand’s longtime relationship and experience with the Sixers organization should allow him to have a mentor-like affect with the young and developing players, allowing him to turn out to be the trophy GM that the 87ers need.
“I’m extremely excited to begin a new role as General Manager of the 87ers,” said Brand. “I want to thank Josh Harris, David Blitzer, Bryan Colangelo and staff for the opportunity to develop, cultivate and elevate talent in our program. I look forward to building upon the successes the Sevens have had both on the court and in the community in Delaware.”
It’s great to see Brand stay with the organization that he once thrived under during his true golden days. A two-time All-Star, Brand played 17 seasons in the NBA, playing 5 of those with Philadelphia from 2008-2012 and during his retirement season, 2015-2016.
This isn’t the first time this year that we’ve seen former NBA players become well invested into front office roles within G-League organizations. In April, Malik Rose was promoted by the Hawks, taking the role of GM for their newly introduced Erie BayHawks team. It was also not too long ago that Anthony Parker took a step up in the Magic organization, from a supporting scout, to the GM of the Lakeland Magic. Coinciding with that, the Los Angeles Clippers just named Dee “The Inventor of the Dab” Brown as the GM for the Aqua Caliente Clippers of Ontario, their G League affiliate.
Hopefully having former professional players leading the operations of G-League teams will have positive affect on the young athletes entering the league, furthermore creating a greater image for the league for years to come.