The sense is, in this case, the Bulls won’t be granted permission to speak with Raptors GM Bobby Webster, michaelgrange reports.
With everything going on, the Toronto Raptors can ill afford to lose their No. 2 basketball exec. But addressing that is only the first item on a long to-do list.
The belief is the Bulls — if they haven’t been already — will be told “this is not a good time” when they come calling for Webster.But that doesn’t mean Tanenbaum doesn’t have a difficult to-do list to figure out and not a whole lot of time to start getting things done if he’s hoping to keep the smooth-running Raptors machine rolling.
The Raptors front office is deep, but that comes with its own risks. Sure, Webster could move on and Raptors assistant general manager Dan Tolzman could jump over a seat, making for a relatively seamless transition, but the bigger-picture question is how will the Raptors make sure they can maintain the momentum their basketball staff has created without them being constantly at risk of being poached?
To recap: nothing much has changed since news broke earlier this year thatthe New York Knicks were targeting Ujiri with a big-money offerto rescue them from nearly two decades of constant futility with occasional trips into chaos.Ujiri has not been offered an extension on his current deal by the Raptors and is believed to be willing to work into the last year of his current deal (2020–21) without one.
It’s the same approach he used in Denver after the Nuggets were slow to extend his contract after a couple of good seasons. In his final year with the Nuggets – 2012–13 – Ujiri was named executive of the year after Denver won a franchise-best 57 games and then joined Toronto as a free agent, becoming one of the best-paid executives in the game.
There were some preliminary conversations in February with Ujiri, but progress stalled after Tanenbaum had minor surgery and MLSE board member George Cope was out of the country.Even then it seemed like there was time to work with, but the COVID-19 pandemic has added another layer of complication beyond the obvious and not-to-be-undersold concerns about public health.
Some longer-term questions are likely even more difficult to answer. What shape will the MLSE board take after Cope — a longtime Ujiri ally — steps down this summer? And what appetite will MLSE’s majority owners — publicly traded communications giants Bell and Rogers (which owns Sportsnet) — have to keep the Raptors among the NBA’s elite as payrolls peak at $200 million or more?
The business of basketball will become more complicated the moment the NBA can become more definitive about the fate of the 2019—20 season and off-season.In the meantime, the optics of negotiating a lucrative executive contract during a health and emerging financial crisis are less than ideal for Tanenbaum and Ujiri, each civic minded enough to be conscious about those kinds of things.
And the first thing Ujiri is going to be want to know is: “What are you going to do for my guys?”Sign up for Raptors newslettersGet the best of our Raptors coverage and exclusives delivered directly to your inbox!Raptors Newsletter*I understand that I may withdraw my consent at any time.
Tanenbaum will need to figure out how to fairly come to new deals for most of his basketball people at the same time as the league’s financial picture has never been more uncertain.Failing to do that will only mean that more teams will keep trying to raid the basketball operations staff that Ujiri has put together. And as the weeks and months go by without having things settled in Toronto, the more interested those staff will be in listening.
These aren’t the bad old days. No one is rushing for the door in Toronto. The organization is recognized league wide as one of the better places to work in the NBA. There is no rancor, and even Tanenbaum and Ujiri have remained on good terms as Ujiri’s name comes up in reports and rumours.
But there was a window to put all of this to bed in the summer of 2019 after the Raptors won, rewards for everyone for jobs well done.That window passed and things have only gotten more uncertain since. Read more: Sportsnet »
michaelgrange Seems puzzling that Tanenbaum would have all these important contracts expiring at the same time. This could be a disaster. michaelgrange Everyone wants our management team..... NO NO NO, to the other 29 teams in the league michaelgrange Be sorry to see him go but happy to throw my hat in the ring if he goes. Check out my profile, I’m cheap, love poutine & believe Toronto to be the best place in the world. Raptors Raptors WeTheNorth You know where I am.
michaelgrange Hands Off !!! He ain’t going anywhere FriedgeHNIC michaelgrange Why would you let your GM interview with another team in the middle of draft prep? I know it's not a normal year but I wouldn't let my GM interview till after the draft. michaelgrange Bulls and Knicks can't poach because of COVID I love it.
FriedgeHNIC michaelgrange I thought you didn’t need permission if you were interviewing someone for a promotion? WaddleandSilvy michaelgrange I wouldn’t want that position. You’ll end up being a scape goat for when they don’t improve due to bad upper management decisions. WaddleandSilvy michaelgrange 🤦🏽♂️
michaelgrange threepeatbulls told you michaelgrange lol just fold the franchise ChicagoBulls michaelgrange michaelgrange Crap
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