According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Sixers have received permission to interview three executives for their GM vacancy: Utah Jazz assistant GM Justin Zanik, Houston Rockets Executive VP of Basketball Operations Gersson Rosas, and Golden State Warriors assistant GM Larry Harris.
According to Wojnarowski, the Sixers plan to begin interviewing candidates next week, but could opt to remain with their collaborative front office that is being spearheaded by Brett Brown if they don’t find the right candidate. Wojnarowski reports that after attempting to lure away multiple “elite” current NBA GMs and failing, the Sixers have moved on and will now target a lower-ranking league executive.
Rosas and Zanik have both been thought of as a part of the next class of NBA GMs for a while. Rosas has spent well over a decade working under Daryl Morey in Houston, and has been given a lot of credit for helping establish their continued run of success over the last many years. He was hired in 2013 to be the GM of the Mavericks, but left the job and went back to Houston before the season began. Rosas was reportedly strongly considered for Charlotte’s GM vacancy that was later filled by former Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak.
Zanik worked his way up near the top of Utah’s front office before briefly going to work for the Milwaukee Bucks, where most assumed he would end up becoming the GM. But the Bucks ultimately decided not to promote him, which led to him returning to Utah last summer to take the assistant GM position.
Harris is a name that hasn’t been associated with the Sixers’ job opening very much, but has an accomplished and interesting past- and is the only one of these candidates with any sort of track record as a GM. Before climbing the ladder from assistant coach to scout to assistant GM and Director of Player Personnel within the Warriors organization, he had a three-year tenure as GM of the Bucks. And his two-year draft record in Milwaukee is interesting- he did not have success in the first round, taking Andrew Bogut first overall in 2006, and Yi Jianlian sixth overall in 2007. But in fairness to him, he did nail a pair of second-rounders, taking Sixers legend Ersan Ilyasova 36th overall in 2005, and Ramon Sessions 56th overall in 2007. While neither of those are franchise-altering moves, they were certainly good picks.
Which of these three would you like the most? Which would you like the least?