David Kahn Rumors
The real problems, though, were much the same as during Garnett’s stay: historically poor management decisions, not enough help on the court and something of an intractable, country-club culture undercutting any player’s or players’ intensity or urgency. Love chafed at the Wolves’ losing, at four head coaches in six years and at former GM David Kahn’s frequently expressed view that Love really wasn’t a franchise player.
David Kahn, the former Timberwolves president of basketball operations who neglected to give Kevin Love the five-year contract he sought in 2012 — allowing the three-time all-star to opt out of his current deal after next season and force a trade to Cleveland — has been spotted around town in Portland, Ore.
Taylor and David Kahn, then president of basketball operations, decided in January 2012 to offer Love a four-year contract extension rather than the five-year maximum “designated player” deal that Love wanted. To convince him to sign, they offered the option of becoming an unrestricted free agent after three years. Taylor was asked if he now considers that decision a big mistake. He paused before answering. “Let’s wait one more year to answer that question,” Taylor said. “I think it’s a good question to ask at this point because Kevin has played as well as we hoped, and maybe even better. To have him tied up long probably would be better than not, but we still have one more year and we’ll see. My hope is it doesn’t make any difference, that Kevin can get the money one way or another and we’re in position to do that.”
Another former NBA general manager rumored to be the “face” of another group is David Kahn. He was the president of basketball operations for the Minnesota Timberwolves before being relieved of his duties last May. A call to Kahn wasn’t returned. Kahn once attempted to bring the Montreal Expos to Portland before the Major League baseball team opted to relocate to Washington.
So it was on the night of the 2011 lottery, when former Timberwolves general manager David Kahn bristled at the sight of the Cavs’ winning the No. 1 pick (and Duke’s Kyrie Irving). “This league has a habit, and I am just going to say habit,” Kahn told reporters, “of producing some pretty incredible storylines.” Then he pointed to how, the year before, the widow of late Wizards owner Abe Pollin had curiously shown up on the night Washington won No. 1 (and Kentucky’s John Wall). And how, on this night, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert had his 14-year-old son, Nick, who suffers from neurofibromatosis, by his side. When he saw Gilbert’s son, Kahn concluded, “we were done.” Kahn later swore that he was joking, but it was too late: A familiar public message had been sent. The soap opera had started anew. “There have been so many instances of what I would call, as a lawyer, ‘the equity of the situation working itself out,'” Falk tells me, referring to how often ostensibly ideal outcomes become actual ones. “And if you hooked owners up to a lie detector, they would admit to thinking that too.”
Love also wasn’t much interested in discussing his relationship with former President of Basketball of Operations David Kahn, who was replaced by Flip Saunders last May. “The past is the past and it’s great to have Flip on board,” Love said. “We’ve had great talks. … We all know what happened last year, and we just want to move forward and take care of unfinished business.”
David Kahn, the general manager that drafted you, left the team this summer. What was your reaction? RR: He took a gamble on me and I will always be grateful. Now Flip (Saunders), with the moves he’s made, is proving he wants to do something big. I had meetings with him in Los Angeles a couple of times and he’s really involved in the whole thing.
Taylor said he hasn’t heard from former president of operations David Kahn for a while. Kahn interviewed for the 76ers general manager opening, and also talked to a couple other teams about front office roles. But if his goal is to remain involved in roster construction, nothing has materialized.
Darren Wolfson: Turns out former #Twolves boss David Kahn not only interviewed for Philly’s GM job, but spoke w/ a few other teams about front office roles.
The Timberwolves have made a number of changes this offseason, none bigger that the decision to fire David Kahn as team president and replace him with Flip Saunders. “It’s a little different,’ Barea said of his new boss. “He had a good offseason, got a couple guys we needed, a couple shooters, got a couple vets like we needed to, a couple guys who have won championships and who look forward to. He signed a lot of guys that wanted to come back like Chase Budinger and Pekovic. I’m going to miss him, [Andrei] Kirilenko did some good things for this team last year, but we got some new guys to fill his spot.”
Kahn fired Rambis in July 2011. The hire, like most everything Kahn tried in Minnesota, never worked. “Rambis got a lot of shit,” Wohl said. “People really just dumped on him. I don’t think they understood how little support he got from David Kahn, how poor a draft David did.”
The Wolves hired Kahn as president of basketball operations in May 2009, two years after Kevin McHale drafted Brewer, who played for Randy Wittman, McHale and Kurt Rambis in his three-plus seasons with the Wolves before Kahn traded Brewer as part of a big trade that sent Carmelo Anthony from Denver to New York. Brewer went to New York in the deal and was waived soon after by the Knicks. The Wolves got Anthony Randolph in return. “If McHale drafted you, you were gone,” Brewer said, “unless your name was Kevin Love.”
He left in 2011 never having proved he had the offensive game to last in the NBA, with a team that drifted rudderless for years after trading Garnett away a month after Brewer arrived in Minnesota. “That was a tough situation there; rebuilding up from KG was tough and I kind of got caught up in that, got caught in the crossfires,” Brewer said from his Denver home. “As soon as I got drafted, he got traded. They were trying to build stuff, had a different coach every year, and I knew when David Kahn took over, I was out of there.”
As for opting out of his $10 million contract with Minnesota, Kirilenko said that the change from David Kahn to Flip Sanders changed everything…that and the non-stop rebuilding in the Twin Cities. “A year ago, I planned a very different scenario,” he told Osipov. ” I thought that I would stay in Minnesota to the end of my career. But these are the realities of the NBA: not everything goes the way you expect. The former general manager left the team – and the situation turned 180 degrees.
There’s a good chance Saunders and his staff will make more use of the D-League than the previous front office regime spearheaded by David Kahn. “You have to do it,” Saunders said. “There’s one thing: in that league, those are pros. Those are guys that are borderline pro players, NBA players, so many of those guys, you’ve got to spend money to scout them, because some of those guys are more ready to play than the college guys.”
Former Wolves boss David Kahn told some friends he thought he had the Sixers general manager job. It went to Houston assistant GM Sam Hinkie.
Why did the Wolves fire Kahn? Rubio: Well, results. They look at results and this year we had some goals that we didn’t accomplish. It’s not like there must be a scapegoat, but it’s obvious that changes had to be made.
Ricky Rubio on Kahn’s firing: He had a lot of confidence in me. And when a person has so much confidence in you, you have to feel bad about it. I’ve talked with Flip Saunders, he has a lot of experience and knows a lot about basketball, so I like him very much.
The Timberwolves’ relationship with Kevin Love will undoubtedly improve with the ouster of David Kahn, but how will it impact Ricky Rubio? Sources say the Rubio family is disappointed in the decision, largely because Kahn is the one who stuck his neck out and drafted Rubio knowing he couldn’t come over right away and did a lot of the legwork to expedite the start of Rubio’s NBA career. Maybe it blows over — Rubio wouldn’t be the first player who disagreed with a decision yet eventually put it behind him — but it bears watching.
Today, two sources directly involved in the talks tell me that in fact the dispute led to depositions in preparation for a hearing, and those depositions did not go well for the Blazers. As a result, Portland agreed to pay Minnesota $1.5 million — said to be one of the largest such agreements in league history — to settle the matter before it reached the hearing stage. The Trail Blazers declined to comment.
In 2010 Kahn said he wanted compensation from the Trail Blazers because they traded him Martell Webster with, he said, an improperly disclosed back injury. (Webster has since moved on to play for the Wizards.)
Restricted free agent Nikola Pekovic’s camp isn’t upset with David Kahn’s dismissal. However, the ultimate call on whether to pay Pekovic $12 million a year on a long-term deal will be Taylor’s. That negotiation will be as fascinating as any to follow.
Eight years after being fired as Timberwolves head coach, Flip Saunders returned to the team Friday morning when he was introduced as the new president for basketball operations. Saunders, 58, replaces David Kahn, who was fired by owner Glen Taylor on Thursday. He received a five-year contract and will also be a limited partner in the team’s ownership group, Taylor said.
David Kahn: Darko, we played Darko. Kurt Rambis and Dave Wohl both were big proponents of making the trade. And once we obtained Darko, I could see what they were talking about. Darko has enormous skills. Both Kurt and Bill Laimbeer played the big-man position in the league and they felt if it ever worked out for him psychologically, he could be one of the top three or four centers in the league. And gain the risk point was quite low when we made the trade and even the contract we gave him that many people talked about was really no more than what a backup center gets in our league this days, about $4 million a year. We didn’t pay him as a starting center even though we had him ticketed as our starting center. So I think there were some reasons to do it and I recognize those reasons even today. One of the things I wished we had done a better job of there was, I only learned after he left, I think there were some family pressures. He had so many visitors, so many family members here at times, there was a lot of pressure and stress in his life that maybe it would have helped to overcome.
Did you handle the contract extension with (Kevin Love) well? A. We handled it the best way we can, and of course I handled it per instructions from the owner. Glen and I talked about it at length. I think it actually took me some time to tell Glen it was imperative he receive max money. The only issue, the only quibble came down to that last year and as I’ve said countless times, for us the danger was if you commit for five years, you’re really committed for six because of the lockout year, which he was playing. It’s an awfully long time to string a contract out with all the variables that can occur mostly due to injuries and oftentimes to big men. That was it. I think Kevin really had his heart set on a fifth year. I think his friendship with Russell Westbrook (who signed a five-year deal with OKC) made it difficult to accept, but that’s why I also prevailed upon Glen that we should relent and give him a third-year option so he felt like he was winning something too. In every compromise it’s important for both sides to walk away with something that was valuable to have. That’s what that was all about. I never had any problems offering that third year option. I thought it was the right thing to do.