HoopsHype Danny Ferry rumors

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May 1, 2015 Updates

You have to scan down to third place for the biggest statement in the voting. Atlanta coach Mike Budenholzer. After GM Danny Ferry was placed on indefinite leave in the wake of inappropriate racial comments he made on a conference call about prospective free agents, Budenholzer was thrust into two roles he'd never done before. A first-year head coach, Budenholzer also had to take over the de facto GM duties. That was no doubt reflected in some of the four first-place and five second-place votes, plus one vote for third, that Budenholzer received. But something else was at work here. As one exec told me, “Bud had nothing to do with constructing the team.” Thus, some of those votes also were a reflection of things that were done before Budenholzer even got to Atlanta. Things that were done by Ferry. Indeed, multiple GMs told CBSSports.com Friday that at least some of the votes cast for Budenholzer – the only official entrant for the Hawks in the executive of the year voting – were essentially proxy votes for Ferry. CBSSports.com

April 21, 2015 Updates
April 18, 2015 Updates

Embry added: “I’ve known racism. I’ve known it quite well. And I told Danny that this is all really a shame because we need more people like him in the league.” Ferry, who lives with his wife and five children in Atlanta, has been spending more time with his family, friends and acquaintances. But far from being reclusive, he has embarked on something that loosely resembles a sabbatical for personal growth, meeting with ministers, professors and community leaders. New York Times

In the weeks that followed, Hill said, Ferry met with faculty members at Spelman College and Morehouse College, two historically black universities in Atlanta. In December, Ferry and his oldest daughter, Hannah, traveled to Senegal, where they were accompanied by Amadou Gallo Fall, an executive with N.B.A. Africa, Hall said. Ferry was also a regular at high school and college basketball games over the winter. Last month, after watching one of his daughters swim at a meet in Orlando, Fla., he drove to Jacksonville to join Walton, the Harvard professor, for the Crimson’s first-round game in the N.C.A.A. tournament. “I’ve been trying to encourage him and tell him, ‘If you come back from this’ — and I definitely think he should — ‘you have the opportunity to be a leader, to both lead by example and to take this conversation where it needs to go,’ ” said Walton, who grew up in Atlanta and attended Morehouse. New York Times

Koonin, the team’s chief executive officer, declined a recent interview request to discuss Ferry’s status. Many of the players, meanwhile, have expressed their support for Ferry. Budenholzer, in a brief interview last week, credited much of the team’s success to Ferry, whom he described as a close friend. Budenholzer said he had been in regular contact with Ferry. “I think it’s probably important to both of us that those conversations are somewhat private,” Budenholzer said. “It’s safe to say that we talk about everything.” New York Times

April 13, 2015 Updates

With Ferry on an indefinite leave of absence, Budenholzer was the Hawks nomination for the NBA’s Executive of the Year award the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Saturday. Budenholzer was named head of basketball operations in September. “Anyone who has followed the Hawks for the last two or three years knows that Danny Ferry is the executive who is most responsible for the makeup of our team,” Budenholzer said Sunday before the Hawks played the Wizards. “Danny is responsible for me being here. Our team is in a good place. I’m very grateful to work with such good players and with such a great staff.” Atlanta Journal-Constitution

April 12, 2015 Updates
April 11, 2015 Updates

With general manager Danny Ferry on a leave of absence the entire season, the Hawks submitted head coach Mike Budenholzer for consideration in voting for the NBA’s Executive of the Year Award, a person familiar with the situation told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Atlanta Journal-Constitution

March 18, 2015 Updates
February 17, 2015 Updates
February 16, 2015 Updates

Given a chance to support Ferry this weekend, Horford deferred to the Hawks’ future ownership group. Asked directly by the Miami Herald if he thought Ferry should be forgiven for his racially charged comments and reinstated as general manager, Horford said, “I don’t know.” “Whichever ownership comes in, they’re going to have to figure those things out and see if he’s the best fit,” said Horford, who won back-to-back NCAA championships at the University of Florida. “Obviously, [Ferry] has laid in some really good groundwork with us, and part of the success that we’re having is because of him.” Miami Herald

“I’m sure it’s difficult for him,” Horford said. “He assembled all these pieces together, and this was kind of his vision. Not even being here, but all season not being able to be around has been hard.” Hawks majority owner Bruce Levenson, who made racially offensive comments about his fans in an email two years ago, is in the process of selling his controlling interest in the team. Levenson’s email came to light in September. Miami Herald

February 14, 2015 Updates

The question now is, will Ferry ever get to enjoy the benefits of his hard work from a point-blank range, instead of his TV set? Well, all indications say that will be up to the next owners of the Hawks, whenever they’re sold, which might not happen until this summer or fall. If left up to the players, however, there’s a pretty clear consensus. “He brought us all together,” said Teague. “I don’t think anyone would be against it.” NBA.com

Millsap: “I would welcome him back. We still don’t know the truth as far as everything that’s going on or everything that happened. I try to stay out of it. But we had a great relationship before all of this happened. I’m not going to let one day throw that relationship down the drain. People make mistakes.” NBA.com

February 5, 2015 Updates

Ferry read a scouting report about potential free agent targets during a conference call with members of the Hawks’ three ownership groups and flippantly recited some insensitive comments about Deng’s African heritage that eventually forced him to take a leave of absence. “He said, ‘I don’t understand why it’s in the report, but I forgive Danny and I’m ready to move on,’ ” Brand said of Deng. “So that helped me. As a team, we felt like that’s a management issue. That was up there. We still got to play, we still got to get our fans back.” Washington Post

February 3, 2015 Updates

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