Following the resignation of Bryan Colangelo and the installation of Brett Brown as interim general manager, Philadelphia’s search for a permanent replacement has been strangely quiet. No interviews have been conducted and no names were even floating around in the official rumor mill. Until now:
The Philadelphia 76ers have been rebuffed in their attempt to hire away Houston's Daryl Morey to take over as their new general manager, @NYTSports has learned— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) July 16, 2018
Without a doubt, Daryl Morey is one of the top general managers in the league. The James Harden heist will be discussed in basketball circles for generations to come, and Morey did a tremendous job acquiring the assets needed to pull off that deal, all without ever bottoming out. The cap gymnastics required to bring in Chris Paul last summer were also masterful. If you’re going to try to poach an established general manager, Morey should be one of your first calls.
Given the shared connections between the parties involved, though, it’s pretty hilarious that the Sixers organization thought they had a shot to lure Morey away. As you may recall, one Samuel Blake Hinkie is a close friend and former longtime work colleague of Mr. Morey. Yes, that’s the same Sam Hinkie who the Sixers ran out of town in Philadelphia right before his expertly laid plans were about to come to fruition. Offering a job to someone that is only available because you pushed his good friend out and his league-sanctioned replacement became a public relations nightmare is a ballsy move.
On top of that specific history involved, it’s tough to see Morey wanting to leave Houston, regardless of how plum the new position may be. Morey has been with the Rockets for 12 years, is given seemingly unconditional support by Houston management, and had the team one game away from the Finals this past spring. Maybe the Sixers thought the Houston franchise being sold last fall created a window where Morey would consider another place of employment.
It doesn’t hurt to ask, I suppose, Sixers management. But if you wanted a cutting edge, analytically inclined, outside the box thinker from Houston as your general manager, you should have kept the one you had.