Now, 11 months later, Nelson is the newly-minted Assist…

Now, 11 months later, Nelson is the newly-minted Assistant General Manager of the Blue Coats. He will also serve as a 76ers scout. “I hope I didn’t say too many bad things,” Nelson said with a laugh. Nelson is not far removed from his own playing days. He last suited up in an NBA game in the spring of 2018. The 38-year-old Chester, PA native and former National Player of the Year at Saint Joseph’s University holds 14 seasons’ worth of NBA playing experience. In 878 career games, the bulk of which were played with the Orlando Magic, he averaged 11.3 points and 5.1 assists.

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Industry insiders estimate that Morey received a salary in excess of $10 million annually. Specific figures were not announced, but some insist that the deal tops the five-year, $60 million contract that Phil Jackson reportedly received when he was named team president by the Knicks. The Sixers, citing team policy, declined to discuss the contract specifics when asked this week.
Jonathan Feigen: Daryl Morey: "I'm so excited to be here. I can't believe how quickly this came together. I can't believe this is happening. The chance to work with Joel and Ben and the roster Elton has put together, has championship aspirations and has a chance to win a championship."
Brian Seltzer: Daryl Morey says "how we play" is going to be up to Doc Rivers. Adds the best way to win in the NBA is to take your talent, figure out how to utilize it the best: "I'm excited to go on this journey with Joel and Ben going forward."
Tom Moore: #Sixers Daryl Morey on needing to surround JE/BS w/players 2 help maximize their skill sets: '1 thing organizations do is try to make the roster perfect from Day 1 … You want to do great moves when they’re available. A lot of times the best move is 1 that’s not done right away.'
Tom Moore: #Sixers Daryl Morey: 'The goal is not to shoot 3-pointers – the goal is to win. You can score on offense a lot of different ways.' Says if he had Shaq he would've given him the ball 'about 100 times' and laughs, and Embiid is a high-level low-post scorer.
Brian Seltzer: Josh Harris on Daryl Morey: “Talent like Daryl rarely becomes available...He has an extraordinary track record of success in this league as an innovator, visionary and leader. I believe he significantly improves our chances of delivering a championship caliber team to our fans."
Brian Seltzer: Also official: Elton Brand signs multi-year extension. “From the moment I arrived in Philadelphia, my goal has been to find a way to bring a championship to this city and our fans. I love this city, I love our fans and will do whatever it takes to help this franchise succeed."
Shams Charania: 76ers GM Elton Brand has signed a multiyear contract extension, sources tell @The Athletic @Stadium. Daryl Morey’s five-year deal to be new 76ers President of Basketball Ops. is now official and he will be introduced on Monday afternoon.
John Clark: Daryl Morey has arrived in Philly and met with Doc Rivers today. Daryl has also met with Josh Harris and Elton Brand in Philly Daryl is expected to sign his contract as new Sixers President of basketball operations this weekend
Hinkie was first asked about rejoining the Philadelphia 76ers, which on the face seems like a better chance than previously considering Daryl Morey was just hired by the team. "Oh, zero," said Hinkie. "Zero. I've turned that chapter for sure. That part of my life. I very much like what I'm doing now. I like surrounding myself with people who think in sort of the timeframes I do, which is often longer. That are quite comfortable with long feedback loops. That want to do the kinds of things I do, which is bet on young people and watch them flourish." Torre then asked Hinkie about working in any capacity within the NBA. "Zero. Zero. The same," said Hinkie.
Adrian Wojnarowski: There is a front office that had a lot of input around Elton (Brand) and I think he tried to navigate all that the best he could having come up pretty quickly out of his playing career, worked in the front office and made the adjustment really fast, I think, to doing the job really working hard at it. And now I think it remains to be seen. I think the initial plan or the initial thought is that Elton may stay. He is welcome to stay. It's a question of, does it make sense for him? Obviously, Daryl, you know, when Daryl is running the team, he's running the team. And so that's a different. I think that's a conversation. So for Elton brand, I know he's well regarded by Doc and Daryl coming in and ownership. And so we'll see how that plays out.
Now, word is leaking out that Brand is pushing hard for the Sixers to hire D’Antoni and that Embiid gave his blessing. According to multiple sources, Embiid is happy that he’ll face the basket instead of posting up in D’Antoni’s proposed five-out system. D’Antoni’s plan is to move Tobias Harris back to power forward. The Sixers will also make trades if he’s hired, according to reports. The expectation is that he’ll have a say in picking players for his freewheeling style of play.
Time will tell what happens with the coaching job left vacant when Brett Brown was fired on Aug. 24. However, league sources said questions about the Sixers' first-office structure have concerned some qualified would-be candidates. They were also concerned that Embiid’s close relationship with ownership would have an impact on a coach’s authority. Another concern was Embiid and Ben Simmons being empowered to think they have a hand in the coaching hire. The sources also wonder who’s actually in charge, even though the Sixers keep saying it’s Brand.
Looking for someone to add below Brand isn’t surprising to league sources, who always questioned ownership’s seriousness in regard to giving up its control to a team president. However, it will be interesting to see if the Sixers make a run at Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey for that job. League sources think he could soon be in the market for another job, even though Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta said Morey’s job is safe following the team’s second-round playoff elimination.
Brand has been given credit publicly for most of the Sixers' key decisions since he was named GM two years ago. But the owners and other front-office people have been more deeply involved than the team has admitted. Still, he met with the team’s ownership on Monday to discuss a new contract, according to multiple sources. Sources added Brand was expecting to get a three- or four-year deal.
The 41-year-old did not respond to The Inquirer’s multiple inquiries about the meeting. But several sources believes he’s in line to get a contract due to being on the front line taking the hits for the organization. Sometime also happened after Monday’s meeting that would lead you to believe that Brand remain in place. Word leaked that the Sixers were intent on adding front-office talent under him. That came after multiple league sources had said the team was inquiring about the possibility of hiring a president of basketball operations.
League sources have said the Sixers are inquiring about the possibility of hiring a president of basketball operations. One source said that Portland Trail Blazers president of basketball operations/ general manager Neil Olshey may have some interest in the Sixers, but that’s only if he has total power, as the president and general manager. Brand is the GM.
Multiple league sources don’t expect executive vice president of basketball operations Alex Rucker to be back next season. Brand has received a lot of criticism for the Sixers’ shortcomings and poor decisions. However, Rucker has been heavily involved behind the scenes in a lot of the decision-making, according to sources. Philly originally hired him as VP of analytics and strategy in October 2016 after seven years as the Toronto Raptors' senior analytics consultant.
Sources have said assistant GM Ned Cohen and VP of strategy Sergi Oliva were also involved in the decision-making. Oliva had a lot to do with determining the Sixers’ rotation and substitution patterns based on the analytics, according to sources. He was an integral part of the coaching meetings and presented the coaches with an analytics sheet to consult during games.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Discussed the dismissal of Brett Brown and what’s next with the 76ers on @GetUpESPN with @ESPNGreeny. "For the Sixers, you're going to see more changes. Elton Brand, their general manager, I'm told is safe, but he's gonna have the opportunity with senior leadership to make some more changes in the front office."
The Philadelphia 76ers fired coach Brett Brown on Monday, sources tell ESPN. Brown's dismissal is expected to be a precursor for more upheaval for the 76ers, whose senior leadership -- including general manager Elton Brand -- will begin exploring changes in the front office structure, sources said.
This was the 76ers' third straight playoff appearance under Brown, but the loss of Simmons in the seeding games to a knee injury and surgery was a significant blow to their playoff chances. Brown is still owed several million dollars on the remainder of his contract.
Brown is well-respected figure inside and outside the organization and credited with shepherding the franchise through the darkness of The Process and eventually into Eastern Conference playoff contention. After seven seasons on the job, there was a sense that the organization had gone as far as it could with Brown -- a decision that he privately expected his superiors to reach short of a deep playoff run, sources said.
And finally, there was last summer’s disaster. Based on what’s been reported, it appears the Sixers passed on giving a five-year max deal to Jimmy Butler but found the same money for a lesser player in Harris. Worse yet, instead of addressing the glaring need for a ballhandling creator on the perimeter that Butler’s loss exposed, Philly used its cap space from Butler’s departure to address the all-important backup center position and drop nearly $100 million on Al Horford. (Side note: Old friend Richaun Holmes was again a free agent and signed a bargain deal in Sacramento that provided massive value). The deals for Harris and Horford rate among the worst in the game right now, but we’re not done yet. Philly also messed up by using its midlevel exception on little-used forward Mike Scott – once again neglecting the guard positions that loomed as such a weakness.
In the two years since, Colangelo has scarcely spoken publicly about the incident. When he spoke to the Herald from Arizona, he knew it was the elephant in the room. "I haven’t addressed it very much over the course of the last two years. I have stayed very much under the radar on the topic because it’s a sensitive topic, for a lot of reasons," Colangelo said. "Family, personal, professional, or otherwise. I have to say I was dealt a pretty big blow, personally and professionally. And it’s been a difficult time dealing with the fallout. I was completely blindsided by the accusation and the storyline of the controversy."
"Once that investigation was completed and I was absolved, I felt the appropriate thing to do - in conjunction with ownership there in Philly - was to mutually walk away. "It was a difficult decision and a difficult time for me. But I have to say, it was a very, very difficult time for my family. Because of some of the reasons that came to light, it was something I thought was important not to talk about, quite frankly. And we’re still dealing with that. "But the No.1 thing I thought needed to happen was trying to stay positive; preserve and love my family, protect their interests, emotionally or otherwise. And frankly, two years on, it’s gone. It’s in the past and I’m ready to move on."
This answer also shows Colangelo doesn’t deserve credibility. He wasn’t absolved. It was untrue when Colangelo said it at the time, and it’s untrue now. The investigators concluded only that they found no forensic evidence that proved Colangelo knew of the Twitter accounts before they became public – and that they had a significant impediment to finding that evidence. Bottini deleted the contents of her phone before surrendering it for review.
Rayne Reiter, who was in her first season as a massage therapy associate, also was let go. Last week, the employees were notified their options would not be picked up. The departures were not due to the COVID-19 financial crisis, according to a source. Their contracts expire this summer. Chef Rob Marzinsky also no longer works for the Sixers. Meanwhile, chef Max Botwick left to open up a restaurant with his wife.
Derek Bodner: Brand says they haven't made a determination yet on whether they're going to directly replace Marc Eversley, who was hired by Chicago to be their GM. Says they are always looking for ways to make their organization better, but that they're happy with who they have.
Adrian Wojnarowski:
Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment, the owner of the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers and NHL’s New Jersey Devils, has appointed David Abrams as head of investments. He will lead the company’s investments in sports-related ventures, esports, media, and entertainment. Abrams will use the company’s expertise in operating professional sports teams and venues to lead investments in startups and acquisitions in the area of sports, technology, media and entertainment. He will report to HBSE CEO Scott O’Neil. It’s another sign that esports and gaming are pushing up into mainstream business and culture.
Tim Bontemps: Brett Brown says the Sixers should sign Elton Brand to a “50-year contract.” Says he loves his relationship with Brand, and they talk at least twice a day every day.
If things go sour in the playoffs, executives and agents around the league say that the first big change would be to the coaching staff. Before team president Bryan Colangelo resigned in 2018, there were rumblings across the NBA that he planned to fire Brown and that his preferred replacement was Villanova head coach Jay Wright. Brown stuck around and Brand was hired as general manager, but last year’s locker room didn’t have the best relationship with Brown, multiple league sources said at the time. From the outside, it doesn’t seem like Brown is reaching his team this season, either, considering the inconsistent defensive effort and shaky offensive system. But ownership has supported Brown through the Process and two front-office regime changes.
While fans thrilled to the activity, and of course, the final project, Brand admits that things weren’t always so much fun in the team’s bunker, from the minute the Sixers lost to Toronto in the Eastern Semis until the final signature was secured on a contract. “There was immense pressure,” he says. “We want to provide the fan base with a championship-level team, and we wanted to get the roster right for the other players on the team. We had Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, and we didn’t want to waste their time on the team. “The draft was a lot of pressure, too. We were trying to get some vets, but we also wanted to get minimum [salary] guys who want to be here. We want to win a championship.”
But Brand certainly doesn’t sound like a grumpy old-timer. In fact, he is a big fan of the current NBA style, even if there aren’t many opportunities for big men who live in the lane. “The NBA changed 20 years ago when I entered it and 35 years ago when I became a fan,” he says. “I like it. Aesthetically, it looks great. It’s a different game. There used to be more post play and elbows to the face. Now, you see spacing and athleticism and freedom of movement. I like it.
After reshaping his roster with a series of moves this week, most notably landing forward Tobias Harris in a trade with the Los Angeles Clippers, Philadelphia 76ers general manager Elton Brand declared Friday morning that Philadelphia's time to win is now. "We believe we are in position to contend now," Brand said, "and our moves reflect that belief."
But Brand said that while the youth of Simmons and Embiid might signal this team having a long window to let things play out slowly, the fact both of them are this good, this quick led him and the rest of Philadelphia's front office to decide the time to strike was now. "They rapidly improved over the last season, so the window is now," Brand said. "The opportunity is now. So, once I saw that, we discussed taking a shot at it now, because who knows how long that window is going to be open?"
For first-year Sixers general manager Elton Brand, it is the second significant deal of the season -- bringing Harris and Butler into the Sixers lineup. Along with Butler, Harris will be a free agent this summer and the Sixers plan to be aggressive in re-signing him to an extension, league sources said.
If Philadelphia feels the same way, it would stand to reason the 76ers would be more reticent to use either Fultz or draft picks to try to bolster that group, perhaps choosing to wait and see what happens over the next few months before committing to Butler, Embiid and Simmons as the team's long-term core. "I don't believe there is any uncertainty," Brown said. "I think, at times, you are trying to move some pieces around. If that equals uncertainty, so be it. But I think there's enough certainty to understand that we want to be as aggressive as we can. "Elton will be as aggressive as he can be in the next week to bolster our team. And I think that that is, as I've just said, that doesn't equate to, 'We don't really know what we have.' That's not it."
Falk lists Brand, Michael Jordan, John Lucas, Phil Ford, Patrick Ewing and Juwan Howard among the clients with whom he gravitated the most in more than four decades in the business. One became an owner, four have gone into coaching and now Brand is the executive. “He’s a natural for it,” Falk said. “He’s got great people skills. People like him. It wasn’t that I always thought he’d be a GM but he’s a really smart guy. He doesn’t want to do nothing, doesn’t want to be bored. … I think he’ll be really good at it, as long as they let him do the job.”
Brown was handed a dual role in the interim but had no desire in holding both roles on a permanent basis. “I don’t believe that they work. You just realize the responsibility that that role has and the dynamics that an organization needs to have in roles and responsibilities and focus areas and there is just too much on the plate to do it well. And that’s just for me. You recognize that from the get-go,” Brown said, without acknowledging recent situations for Budenholzer, Stan Van Gundy and Tom Thibodeau that didn’t work out. “I don’t even reference other examples. I just know, for me. I came from Pop and R.C. and so, that’s a successful example. Although there are other examples that might not have worked, it had nothing to do either with the successful ones with Pop or even the ones that we know didn’t work recently. It had nothing to do with that.
The Philadelphia 76ers announced January 8th the hiring of Annelie Schmittel. In her new role as 76ers Vice President of Player Development, Schmittel will be responsible for creating, managing and overseeing the holistic development and implementation of programs that support the professional and personal growth of 76ers players, staff and families.
“We learned a lot from our series against the Celtics, and we felt we needed Jimmy,” Josh Harris told The Athletic. “Since last summer, we’ve felt we needed a third elite talent. You don’t get a chance to get this talent every day. Jimmy wants to win, and Joel and Ben want to win. That’s the bottom line." "When you can add a talented four-time All-Star, you got to do it and then worry about everything else afterward,” Brand told The Athletic. “We already lost to Milwaukee, we already lost to Boston, we already lost to Toronto — we needed to take a shot, take a leap. That was my thought, my vision. Me and my staff, we talked to ownership and they had our backs. You get the talent first. Talent wins. “When I talked to Nazr and Mike, they genuinely love Jimmy and say, ‘He just wants to win, EB. This is all about hoop.’ Of course, the money, whatever, it will work out when it’s time. We hope he sees a fit, and we hope we see a fit.”
Once the Wolves finally came to the conclusion that a deal had to be made, owner Glen Taylor spoke personally with Sixers owner Josh Harris to push it through, sources said. The Wolves were in a difficult position from a bargaining perspective given all of the negativity, and losing, that had enveloped the franchise. The Wolves were eyeing three offers from different teams, but made the decision on Saturday to go forward with Philly’s package, sources said.
This summer Brown oversaw basketball operations while ownership went in search of Colangelo's replacement. The Sixers had initially gone big-game hunting, and a number of veteran general managers had reached out through intermediaries to inquire about what was now the most coveted executive opening in the NBA. Discussions with Rockets GM Daryl Morey were "pretty far down the road," according to a source close to the process, but Morey elected to remain in Houston.
Several league insiders interpreted Brand's hire as a statement of control by the Sixers' ownership group, as was Brand's title of "general manager." (Colangelo served as president of basketball operations.) The thinking goes that should they have second thoughts, the owners can return to the big-game hunt and install someone at the top of the org chart above Brand.
Whenever the Bryan Colangelo/burner-accounts situation was unfolding over the summer, what was it like to be a player in the middle of that and what were your thoughts as things were surfacing? Robert Covington: It was a lot… But, I mean, you never really know the truth behind everything and you never know exactly what happened. I think you have to take everything with a grain of salt. You never know what the truth was behind it. But, as a player, you can’t allow yourself to get caught up in it too much because then it may start to affect your play and all that. We really just had to focus on what we had going on at that time. Then, during the offseason, that’s when everything played out [and Colangelo resigned]. Sometimes, you just have to move on. It’s sad that it happened to us, considering how everything was going [in the right direction]. But things happen.
Shams Charania: Sources on @theathleticnba @watchstadium: The Philadelphia 76ers are promoting exec Matt Lilly to interim GM of G League Delaware. Lilly worked under 76ers GM Elton Brand in Delaware last season.
"Brand lacks a little experience, but I really like the hire," a source familiar with the Sixers organization said. "He knows the game, works hard, gets along with people, and is a basketball guy. Those are all positives. He listens to people and heeds their advice. Can he make his own decisions and keep ownership out of decisions is a question to be determined."
Pressed on who would ultimately have final say in the organization, Josh Harris gave a rather roundabout answer that both did and did not answer the question: "Elton and Brett are partners, like in many, many great organizations in basketball, him and Brett are partners. Both of them report to me and to ownership, and we expect they'll be collaborating a lot. Ultimately, Brett is the on the court voice, and Elton's the off-the-court voice. Elton will have kind of the loudest voice off the court, and final decisionmaking authority subject to ownership...minute-to-minute coach sort of decisions will be Brett, and personnel decisions, trades, free agency will be Elton."
In fact, Harris' primary rebuttal to questions about Brand's lack of experience was to point to what he did as a player and not anything specific he'd done to date as a Sixers staffer: "Elton has 17 years experience as a player, and you can't discount that in terms of understanding how this league works and how to get to the next level. And in his two years of management experience, we've been incredibly impressed, and then during the interview process, his vision and ability to lead was evident. But also, just the broad support he had internally, across the board, and so it became a relatively easy decision for us, he rose."
Prior to this new promotion, Brand was expected to dedicate time to the big league club and be part of the parent club's ultimate decision-making process, a source told PhillyVoice in late August. The Sixers, as they did when he was brought back as a player in the dog days of "The Process", expected him to serve in some capacity as a "big brother" to their players. But the meatier part of his August promotion was gaining input on front-office decisions for the 76ers.
The Philadelphia 76ers hired Elton Brand as general manager on Tuesday, completing a meteoric rise in the franchise's front office, league sources told ESPN. Brand made a strong impression on ownership and coach Brett Brown in the interview process, beating out several more experienced candidates inside and outside the Sixers organization, sources said. Ultimately, ownership believed that he had sold them on vision, preparedness and the ability to grow into the role at a crucial time for the organization.
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