Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

BREAKING NEWS: Steve Mills in as GM/President, Glen Grunwald out.

This is weird.

But this is the Knicks, so of course, on a random, lovely autumn Thursday, we get this bit ‘o info over the Twitter-wire…

 

Which might mean absolutely nothing/a shakeup of titles or organizational structure. Or it might mean Dolan was really, RILLY peeved that Grunwald didn’t send Shumpert to Belize, via Saul Goodman’s vacuum cleaner repairman chum, Robert Forster.

Stay tuned. Gonna be a fun* afternoon!

UPDATE (12:01pm): More sources are now using the word “out” with regards to Grunwald.

UPDATE (12:16pm)

His eminence speaks (sort of):

And now we now (probably). Grunwald’s a Walsh-esque “advisor” and it was (probably) Dolan’s call. The Knicks!

Here’s the official release, printed on a parchment torn from the pages of the Necronomicon and written in virgin ram’s blood:

“I am pleased to be able to welcome Steve back to the Knicks,” owner James Dolan said. “He is a well-respected sports executive with a strong background in basketball, as well as a familiarity with NBA operations and our company. We look forward to his leadership and believe he is the right person to help us reach our ultimate goal of winning an NBA Championship.

“We are grateful for Glen’s many years of valuable service and pleased that he will remain with the organization.”

We’ll have some more, hopefully reasoned thoughts on all this later, perhaps as soon as we can wrench the bloody stumps that used to be our arms out of the garbage disposal, but for now, this is weird and disappointing and oh-so-very Knicks.

*Incredibly nerve-wracking

67 comments on “BREAKING NEWS: Steve Mills in as GM/President, Glen Grunwald out.

  1. thenamestsam

    Good old Knicks. It had honestly been like a full year since there was one of those stories that just made you scratch your head and go: “Huh?”. We were way past due.

    So, here it is: Huh? I don’t really have any thoughts on it other than that at the moment. Have to wait and hear more about what exactly the situation is, but obviously I’m one of many (most? all?) who thought Grunwald was doing a pretty darn nice job overall given the constraints of the situation. Very curious to hear more.

  2. flossy

    I wonder what Grunwald did to get the boot. Did Dolan look at his phone bill and see too many texts to Jeremy Lin? We know it wasn’t because he lost too many basketball games or because he sexually harassed people, because Dolan plainly doesn’t care about that stuff.

  3. ognyc

    how much would it cost, per knicks fan, to buy the team away from Dolan the man baby…it might just cost a diamond encrusted rattle…how much more of this are we supposed to take?

  4. ephus

    Things that might have led to this move:

    1. Shumpert should have played more games this summer in Las Vegas. Stephen A. Smith stated (not for broadcast) that Dolan was pissed off and wanted to trade Shumpert for not playing more than one Summer League game. http://nypost.com/2013/07/17/stephen-a-slip-knicks-dolan-wanted-to-trade-shumpert-because-of-summer-league-flap/

    2. Dolan decided he does not like the Bargnani trade.

    3. Grunwald spoke to the press outside of the MSG-approved window.

    4. “Forget it, Jake. It’s Chinatown.”

    I guess #1, because it is the most foolish reason, but I am going to try to live #4.

  5. thenamestsam

    Okay well now it seems clear that this is not a purely cosmetic move and Grunwald is, in fact, being replaced. Which leads me to two questions. The first is, from what I’ve read, Mills is more of a business guy than a basketball guy, so who’s going to be the head basketball guy? I know what name popped into my head, and I know what name popped into your head. I won’t say it out loud because I really don’t think even Dolan would go there, but I can’t help but think it.

    The second question is was this Grunwald’s choice or Dolan’s? Because not only was Grunwald doing a good job, but immediately after the off-season is basically the oddest time to fire (sorry, “reassign”) a GM. So maybe this was GG’s choice, but that doesn’t seem to be the case based on the press release issued. So, uh, I don’t really know what else to say. Who replaces a GM immediately after letting them choose a bunch of new players but before giving those guys a chance to see how the perform?

  6. Frank

    Jon@knicksfan.net made a great point on twitter – Mills doesn’t have much personnel experience (although I guess he was director of NBA player development for the league for a while) — and Mark Warkentien is still around. Seems likely that Warkentien will have a lot of say in the new regime.

    And John Kenney brought up a nightmare scenario too — does this mean Shump isn’t untouchable anymore? Was Stephen A right that Dolan was mad at Iman? Did GG go to bat for Iman and this is what he gets?

  7. ephus

    thenamestsam: I know what name popped into my head, and I know what name popped into your head. I won’t say it out loud because I really don’t think even Dolan would go there, but I can’t help but think it.

    Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice!

    Oh, hi Isiah.

  8. massive

    I just hope it’s Warkentein who gets the job as head basketball guy. It’s starting to look like Melo is going to get that $120 million deal nobody really wants him to sign at age 30.

    I simply can’t trust Dolan to do anything right. I don’t like when he makes decisions.

  9. flossy

    DRed:
    This seems like a prelude to Dolan doing something really fucking stupid.

    Prelude? I think this is Dolan doing something pretty fucking stupid, period.

  10. massive

    My nerves tell me this has to do with a Rajon Rondo trade. I feel like the whole “Melo wants Rondo” thing was no joke and that Grunwald was reluctant to trade Felton, Shumpert, and all of our 1st rounders until 2024 just to get him (when it’s plausible that he’ll sign here for free in 2015). If they’re saying it was a personnel fall out, that’s the only thing that makes sense to me.

    I hope somebody lets Shumpert know that a good man lost his job because he didn’t want to trade him. Make Grunwald proud, Shump.

  11. Frank

    massive:
    I just hope it’s Warkentein who gets the job as head basketball guy. It’s starting to look like Melo is going to get that $120 million deal nobody really wants him to sign at age 30.

    I simply can’t trust Dolan to do anything right. I don’t like when he makes decisions.

    Zwerling is saying that Allan Houston is still being groomed. I guess we’ll see.

    Re: Mills – he was supposed to be a shoo-in for Billy Hunter’s old job as Exec Director of the NBPA. Say whatever you want about Billy Hunter, but my feeling about that is that he is probably well respected by players around the league and probably has a reputation for being a tough negotiator– since that’s all Billy Hunter’s job was other than finding cushy jobs for his kids.

    Makes you wonder whether Dolan didn’t like hearing about how Grunwald got fleeced on so many deals.

    Hopefully that’s the thinking – because otherwise I think GG did an admirable job as GM all things considered.

  12. Bob

    I don’t even think it is Steve Mills. Check out the photo on the New York Post sports section. I think it’s Alan Houston with a fake mustache!

  13. thenamestsam

    flossy: Prelude?I think this is Dolan doing something pretty fucking stupid, period.

    True but I think there’s at least a chance this is going to get worse. Lets put it this way: I’ll consider it a victory if there isn’t another breaking Knicks story in the next week or so. If there is another domino to fall here I don’t expect it to be a good one.

    flossy:
    Uh if Gren Grunwald wouldn’t trade Felton and Shumpert for Rondo then he deserves to be fired, just saying

    Also this is 100% true but lets be honest. Boston isn’t giving up Rondo for Shump, Felton and even a bevy of picks. I love Shump as much as the next man, but he’s not the kind of asset that brings you a max level player on a nice contract. Plus GG isn’t a moron who would turn down that kind of move. If GG was resisting trading him I bet the player discussed looked a lot more like Dudley than Rondo.

  14. bidiong

    We’re about to lose every chance we had of winning a championship. Dolan is having a hissy fit over something. Please have a stroke Dolan, please, today, for the love of God.

  15. Nick C.

    Wow this is mind boggling. Wasn’t Steve Mills Dolan’s snitch his last go around> I seem to recall stories to the effect of firing restaurant/service personnel for what was effectively “lack of deferentialness.” I never recall him being referenced as having anything to do with the basketball side of things. Reading between the lines Dolan wants to be the GM or at least make all the decisions and pay someone to do the actual work (in a way that is what a job is but in other ways it isn’t).

  16. lavor postell

    Really sucks to lose Grunwald as GM, but I’m going to wait on passing judgment until we see how the rest of the front office shakes out. If Warkentien and Houston move up the ranks I don’t think it would be the worst thing ever, though a bit puzzling unless this was something Grunwald wanted and he and the Knicks kept under wraps until was planned.

    I’m grasping for the positive straws here, but coming up with a whole lot of nothing. At least Grunwald got to put together the majority of this roster before he got tossed aside. As long as IT isn’t brought back into the mix I’ll count my blessings considering James Dolan still owns this team.

    Might need to get out of work early today and grab a beer or 10…

  17. SeeWhyDee77

    Such a lovely day today
    *stomach starts gurgling loud enough for everyone in the room to hear*
    Excuse me yal, I don’t know what’s wrong but suddenly I feel like my stomachs in knots. What’s that u say? No..what??!! Grunny’s no longer leading the Knicks FO? Huh? Well who’s replacing him? Colangelo? Vandeweghe? Jerry West? Seriously? Steve Mills? Oh God..I think I’m gonna be sick. *Thinking ‘look for silver lining look for silver lining!* Welp…at least it’s not Isaiah or Layden! *suddenly spits projectile vomit* I’m so sorry guys! So sorry..it just came out of nowhere.

  18. KnickfaninNJ

    ephus:
    Things that might have led to this move:

    1. Shumpert should have played more games this summer in Las Vegas. Stephen A. Smith stated (not for broadcast) that Dolan was pissed off and wanted to trade Shumpert for not playing more than one Summer League game.http://nypost.com/2013/07/17/stephen-a-slip-knicks-dolan-wanted-to-trade-shumpert-because-of-summer-league-flap/

    2. Dolan decided he does not like the Bargnani trade.

    3. Grunwald spoke to the press outside of the MSG-approved window.

    4. “Forget it, Jake.It’s Chinatown.”

    I guess #1, because it is the most foolish reason, but I am going to try to live #4.

    I would guess number #2. Dolan wants players that sell tickets, not players that win Basketball games. We had a lot of debate here about whether Bargnani will help win games, but I doubt anyone thinks he’s helping to sell tickets.

  19. KnickfaninNJ

    I predict that Philadelphia will do terribly this year and then hire Grunwald as GM (although Karma thoughts suggest he will end up with the Nuggets or the Lakers)

  20. Darrell H.

    Ugh. Could Dolan want to bring in Phil Jackson as GM? Move Mills to President of B.O. ?

    I was having a most relaxed Summer and really looking forward to this season. Now? I expect turmoil!!!

  21. thenamestsam

    Oh also worth pointing out that the stories that came out in the Browne Sanders case make this new guy Mills sound like a real piece of shit. According to Browne Sanders she told Mills that Isiah was harassing her verbally and sexually and asked him to intervene multiple times and that he never did, and that he warned her (read: threatened) that if she persisted with harassment claims Isiah was going to start a rumor she was having an affair with an assistant GM.

    So if you weren’t already feeling pretty great about this situation that should help things along. Always a pleasure rooting for the Knicks.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/13/sports/basketball/13thomas.html?_r=1&

  22. Eternal OptiKnist

    Mills seems to be a very astute business man/marketer so im fine from that end of it…strange though to re-hire someone who presided over the worst decade of your company…ever. Plus i thought GG did a pretty good job with what he had (although amnestying billups was pretty damn awful). Just seems strange…i feel there is another shoe that needs to drop. Id say literally, no one outside of the garden bigs know whats going on.

  23. Hubert

    The Scott O’neill thing last year was pretty big, too. And notice how everyone loves what Philadelphia’s done since they hired him.

    We just can’t have nice things.

  24. hnwingo

    Perhaps Dolan did not like the Tim Hardaway Jr. draft or the Bargnani trade. Knicks will really miss GG, even though I did not like those moves either. Grunwald and Donnie Walsh led the Knicks out of the Wilderness to the second round of the playoffs. Most likely scenario is that Dolan’s reasoning is vindictive not rational; so may be a waste of time trying to figure it out.

  25. Hubert

    hnwingo:
    Most likely scenario is that Dolan’s reasoning is vindictive not rational; so may be a waste of time trying to figure it out.

    Yep.

    Of course, we also don’t really know who is responsible for what in our organization.

    We like to assign credit for all the good things to the people we want to believe are in charge, and blame all the bad things on Dolan and his lackeys. That’s probably accurate, but who knows.

    Maybe Dolan fired Walsh and Grunwald because he realizes that first round picks are critical to an organization and they just didn’t value them enough :)

    We thought the worst when Donnie left and it turned out OK. This could be nothing.

    One thing we do know, for sure: Daryl Morey is on line 1 right now.

  26. Brian Cronin

    Here’s the thing, though, while clearly this is yet another terrible decision by Dolan, the Knicks only have three guys with any real trade value (Melo, Chandler and Shump) and only one of them you should be scared about the Knicks trading (Shump) so as bad of a move as this is, there’s not a whole lot that they can do to fuck the team up at this point beside trading Shump.

    Of course, I might have just jinxed things and gotten Shump traded. ;)

  27. Frank

    Interesting article by Ian Begley at ESPN-NY:

    http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/knicks/post/_/id/48272/analysis-what-mills-means-for-the-knicks

    -suggesting that maybe the big plan is for Allan Houston to be GM when the next big round of moves is made after the 14-15 season — and that the move was made now so it did not seem like Houston directly pushed out Grunwald. Clearly the guys who are left over (Houston, Warkentien, and John Gabriel) are the ones who benefit from this, and it’s long been rumored that Houston is being groomed for the GM job– so this sort of makes sense.

    I liked Grunwald in general and think he did a good job — although his tenure is not without its warts — most notably the 4 year contracts given to Felton and Novak (totally unnecessary to give them contracts stretching into that crucial 2015-16 season), the relatively disastrous Camby trade, and his inability to say no to Daryl Morey and Masai Ujiri when they ask for “just one more draft pick”.

    Most of all – I was looking forward to a little bit of continuity on this team from front office to coach to roster. I guess like Hubert said, we just can’t have nice things.

    Hubert: One thing we do know, for sure: Daryl Morey is on line 1 right now.

    Mills could not possibly be worse at negotiating than Grunwald, so my guess is that GMs around the league aren’t super happy about this. (not that we have any draft picks or assets left for them to swipe)

  28. Frank

    One last thing — a few people have commented on the weird timing of this move — right before the season, most roster spots filled, etc. It’s the perfect time to make this move if the plan is to groom the next person for the job to be done in 2 years. Everything is in place for the team to compete these next two years — not much to mess up. And if GG was going to be out anyway, at least he wouldn’t have to endure being a lame duck next year.

  29. johnno

    flossy: Prelude? I think this is Dolan doing something pretty fucking stupid, period.

    Sigh…It really says a lot about our diminished expectations when firing a well-respected GM who most people think as done a very good job without have a great replacement lined up is merely seen as a PRELUDE to something dumb. My brain hurts right now.

  30. mokers

    I was giving Dolan the benefit of the doubt for letting Grunwald do his job. It’s not necessarily a terrible decision, but when you realize he is bringing in an insider and yes-man, it makes you lose all sorts of faith.

    Hopefully it’s something like Grunwald wanted to be closer to family (he still has ties in Toronto, no?). or something. In reality I say we take bets on the how many days until Mills pulls a “sells tickets” basketball move that kills our cap flexibility in the future. I’ll put the over under on 95.5 days.

  31. Hubert

    Can I just point that, in general, grooming someone for a job is a terrible idea.

    For instance, James Dolan was groomed for his job. Jim Buss was groomed for his job. George W Bush was groomed for his job. David Shula was groomed for his job. I know these are all legacy kids, but that’s typically the kind of person that gets groomed for a job. Most people earn jobs and compete against other people to get better ones.

    I would say the chances that Allan Houston becomes a good GM because we groomed him are slim to none.

  32. JK47

    So, the new GM is “not a basketball guy” and is one of Guitar Jimmy’s cronies still hanging around from the Anucha Browne Sanders days.

    This will end well for sure.

  33. KnickfaninNJ

    Hubert,

    It may be true that grooming for a job doesn’t work for relatives, but non relatives are a different matter. Many corporations have fast tracks that let people they think have potential move up quickly if they keep doing well and I thin they work reasonably well.

    On the over/under stuff, I can see us trading for Kobe if the season doesn’t start well, and I really don’t want that to happen. We probably trade depth for a ticket selling shell of a player recovering from injury. So I hope the team starts off really well…

  34. flossy

    thenamestsam:
    Oh also worth pointing out that the stories that came out in the Browne Sanders case make this new guy Mills sound like a real piece of shit. According to Browne Sanders she told Mills that Isiah was harassing her verbally and sexually and asked him to intervene multiple times and that he never did, and that he warned her (read: threatened) that if she persisted with harassment claims Isiah was going to start a rumor she was having an affair with an assistant GM.

    So if you weren’t already feeling pretty great about this situation that should help things along. Always a pleasure rooting for the Knicks.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/13/sports/basketball/13thomas.html?_r=1&

    This is honestly what disturbs me the most. Steve Mills former job with the team was basically to supress any blowback resulting from the rampant sexual harassment going on at MSG in the bud. Not only is that a horrible thing to do, but he wasn’t even good at it!

  35. flossy

    flossy: This is honestly what disturbs me the most.Steve Mills former job with the team was basically to supress any blowback resulting from the rampant sexual harassment going on at MSG in the bud.Not only is that a horrible thing to do, but he wasn’t even good at it!

    Welp, that got mangled. Never mind, carry on…

  36. thenamestsam

    I definitely see Hubert’s point here. I mean Allan Houston always seemed like a smart enough guy, clean cut, high profile ex-Knick, fills out a suit pretty nicely. If you’re going to go the ex-player route for the GM (and I think in the modern game it’s probably generally preferable not to) you could do worse than him. But has he really done enough to justify the moving aside of a guy who every segment of a divided fanbase seems to think has done a pretty fine job? And we’re not even moving aside GG so that he can take the reins, but just to set up a smoother transition when he does take the reins in a year or so?

    Maybe internally he really is a star in the organization and it’s worth pulling this kind of move just to pave the way for him. But this strikes me as some dubious logic. For one, I’m really not convinced that Houston would have suffered some kind of backlash if he’d taken over directly for Grunwald a year from now. For two, if the organization really sees him as a rising star you’d think they’d feel like he could handle that pressure (if any arose).

  37. Robtachi

    Hey guys I’m just coming down from a mid-morning 8-ball, what’s been going o-OH GOD, AM I STILL HIGH?

  38. Z-man

    I find the move alarming, but what does it say that Grunwald is still with the team? I’m wondering if GG himself has an eye on another job and had a deal with Dolan to get this year’s team set before moving on. I wouldn’t be surprised if he winds up at Indiana, isn’t Bird retiring and Walsh just about done? Anyway, I hope it eventually comes out that this is what GG wanted, otherwise i just don’t get it.

  39. DRed

    Per Berman: “Knicks owner James Dolan realizes the club may be in store for a major shakeup in 2015, when the team again may have a ton of salary cap space, and appears to want a heavy hitter such as Mills to oversee the process.”

    hahahahahahahahahaha

    Good lord, Dolan is a fucking bozo. If only he could trade himself.

  40. DRed

    thenamestsam:
    I definitely see Hubert’s point here. I mean Allan Houston always seemed like a smart enough guy, clean cut, high profile ex-Knick, fills out a suit pretty nicely. If you’re going to go the ex-player route for the GM (and I think in the modern game it’s probably generally preferable not to) you could do worse than him. But has he really done enough to justify the moving aside of a guy who every segment of a divided fanbase seems to think has done a pretty fine job? And we’re not even moving aside GG so that he can take the reins, but just to set up a smoother transition when he does take the reins in a year or so?

    Maybe internally he really is a star in the organization and it’s worth pulling this kind of move just to pave the way for him. But this strikes me as some dubious logic. For one, I’m really not convinced that Houston would have suffered some kind of backlash if he’d taken over directly for Grunwald a year from now. For two, if the organization really sees him as a rising star you’d think they’d feel like he could handle that pressure (if any arose).

    As far as Houston, I have no idea why anyone would think he’d make a good GM. I’d certainly hire him to teach people how to shoot jump shots, but making him GM seems about as logical as making him head of the anti-defamation league.

  41. Z-man

    The other thing is, I have soured on Woodson and think he is just a bad playoffs coach. Maybe a coach doesn’t make as much of a difference to this team as I would hope, but clearly, so long as Grunny was here, Woodson was staying. Again, reaching for silver linings!

  42. KnickfaninNJ

    Z-man:
    I find the move alarming, but what does it say that Grunwald is still with the team? I’m wondering if GG himself has an eye on another job and had a deal with Dolan to get this year’s team set before moving on. I wouldn’t be surprised if he winds up at Indiana, isn’t Bird retiring and Walsh just about done? Anyway, I hope it eventually comes out that this is what GG wanted, otherwise i just don’t get it.

    Unfortunately, the fact that he is still with the team may only say that he has a contract and they have to keep paying him despite very different responsibilities. Under Walsh and Grunwald, the Knicks drafted reasonably and found low cost role palyers who really produced. It was the first time in decades the Knicks were able to do this. Under Mills they did the opposite, they found high priced players that didn’t produce. (sigh) and I was actually thinking maybe I would go to a game or two at MSG

  43. Z-man

    DRed: As far as Houston, I have no idea why anyone would think he’d make a good GM.I’d certainly hire him to teach people how to shoot jump shots, but making him GM seems about as logical as making him head of the anti-defamation league.

    As a Jew, I didn’t take what Houston said/did back then as being particularly anti-Semitic. He and Ward were basically saying that Jews were stubborn in the context of convincing them to convert to Christianity. Remember Ward’s classic defense? “I have lots of Jewish friends. In fact, my best friend is Jewish…Jesus Christ.”

  44. DRed

    Z-man: As a Jew, I didn’t take what Houston said/did back then as being particularly anti-Semitic. He and Ward were basically saying that Jews were stubborn in the context of convincing them to convert to Christianity. Remember Ward’s classic defense? “I have lots of Jewish friends. In fact, my best friend is Jewish…Jesus Christ.”

    oh, was just a throwaway line. Houston was more guilty of being ignorant than anti-semitic. Anyhow, I probably shouldn’t have brought it up. No need to drag religion into our discussion of what a fucking idiot our owner is.

  45. Z-man

    DRed: No need to drag religion into our discussion of what a fucking idiot our owner is.

    Amen, let us pray for his eternal damnation.

  46. d-mar

    Just to let everyone know what they’re in store for this year from the local sports media, I heard an interview with basketball genius Frank Isola today on ESPN radio, where he talked glowingly about the Brooklyn Nets and basically implied that the Knicks are a sinking ship. He predicted that Brook Lopez (screw in his foot) will have a career year playing next to KG (persistent knee issues) and then astutely pointed out that the Knicks are plagued with health issues, from JR to STAT to Bargnani. Add that to the “turmoil” in the front office, and his implication was that the Knicks are basically doomed.

    What a freaking dope, and he actually gets paid for that type of commentary.

  47. Unreason

    BigBlueAL:
    On a side note, I lost it while watching Mo crying while he left the mound tonight.

    Big chunk of Yankee mojo just crumbled into sand. Really not a good thing at all, no matter how appropriate the timing. I have to root for them, but they’re a much less special club after tonight.

  48. Z-man

    As a Mets fan, I am delighted that the Yankees will soon come to experience the devastating blown save, just like the rest of the league.

  49. Z-man

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    I <3 Knix

    Get the sarcasm, but to be fair, you were not a fan of several of his moves, and the ones you liked (e.g. Camby, Brewer, and to a lesser degree, Chandler) haven’t worked out so well. But I get it, Mills = Isiah era v.2.

  50. cypesnyk4life

    This is a terrible move I pray they dont trade shump! I was really looking foward to seeing what we were gonna do. Under the constraints he had I think GG did an excellent job while working for a ROYAL PAIN IN THE ASS! jackass dolan! Woody needs to give shump the same freedom he gives jr he needs to stay on Melo when he gets beat! It almost seems as if woody is afraid of melo.does anyone else feels that way? I know one thing if we get off to a slow start its bye bye Woody.Being a Knicks fan is so damn hard been a fan since micheal ray/ray williams backcourt thats along Damn time im tired!

  51. KnickfaninNJ

    Of course they are going to trade Shump. What I worry most about is that Dolan believes all the press about the Knicks being 5th in the division and much worse than the Nets and wants Mills to do something right away. Maybe Grunwald didn’t want to do this. If that’s the case maybe we will see trade news in the next week or so.

    The funny thing is that I think the Knicks were going to sell out their tickets anyway this year, without doing anything at all.

  52. Hubert

    KnickfaninNJ:
    Hubert,

    It may be true that grooming for a job doesn’t work for relatives, but non relatives are a different matter.Many corporations have fast tracks that let people they think have potential move up quickly if they keep doing well and I thin they work reasonably well.

    On the over/under stuff, I can see us trading for Kobe if the season doesn’t start well, and I really don’t want that to happen. We probably trade depth for a ticket selling shell of a player recovering from injury. So I hope the team starts off really well…

    Not really, though.

    Sometimes people get fast tracked to a middle management position where they then have to prove themselves against competition. Sometimes someone who has established himself as a senior executive gets picked to move up and gets groomed to make the final step of the ladder.

    This is different.

    Jim Dolan decided that Allan Houston was going to be a high level executive (eventually the highest) when Allan Houston had done nothing to demonstrate he might be capable of that, and that got handed jobs to do to learn the ropes.

    There is no Fortune 500 company that picks a fresh-faced kid with no relevant experience and says: “I’m going to groom you for the top position in my company, and no matter what happens, no matter who outperforms you, no matter how good the person currently in that position does, you’re getting the job.”

    That kind of stuff really only happens to legacy kids and idiots who married the boss’s daughter. And Allan Houston.

  53. Hubert

    Z-man:
    I find the move alarming, but what does it say that Grunwald is still with the team? I’m wondering if GG himself has an eye on another job and had a deal with Dolan to get this year’s team set before moving on. I wouldn’t be surprised if he winds up at Indiana, isn’t Bird retiring and Walsh just about done? Anyway, I hope it eventually comes out that this is what GG wanted, otherwise i just don’t get it.

    I think it probably just means he is under contract and Dolan won’t let him go and he has no choice but to see it out. He’s basically a highly paid indentured employee.

  54. KnickfaninNJ

    Hubert: Not really, though.

    Sometimes people get fast tracked to a middle management position where they then have to prove themselves against competition.Sometimes someone who has established himself as a senior executive gets picked to move up and gets groomed to make the final step of the ladder.

    This is different.

    Jim Dolan decided that Allan Houston was going to be a high level executive (eventually the highest) when Allan Houston had done nothing to demonstrate he might be capable of that, and that got handed jobs to do to learn the ropes.

    There is no Fortune 500 company that picks a fresh-faced kid with no relevant experience and says: “I’m going to groom you for the top position in my company, and no matter what happens, no matter who outperforms you, no matter how good the person currently in that position does, you’re getting the job.”

    That kind of stuff really only happens to legacy kids and idiots who married the boss’s daughter.And Allan Houston.

    My point was that being on the fast track somewhere doesn’t necessarily mean you are under-qualified. I didn’t mean to suggest that Houston was qualified just because he wasn’t a relative of someone’s. You could definitely be right that he is in the position he is because of his name, not his talent. But it’s hard to tell. After all, Ewing is a name too, and he hasn’t gotten anywhere with being hired by the Knicks for anything.

  55. Jack Bauer

    Gunwald did a fantastic job under extremely difficult circumstances IMO. Firing him is just an ignorant, idiotic, Dolan move. I hate to say it, but it is clear the Knicks are doomed due to epically incompetent ownership and management.

  56. Robert Silverman Post author

    BigBlueAL:
    On a side note, I lost it while watching Mo crying while he left the mound tonight.

    An organization that knows how to treat a player and it’s fans right. What a concept! (And I say that as a lifelong Met fan)

  57. thenamestsam

    Also of note: According to this Grantland piece that came out today 2 years ago Alan Houston made the argument that Lebron wasn’t the best player in the league, Kobe was, because he had won championships. So that’s the guy who we’re going out of our way to groom for the big job. A “Count the rings” guy. Everyone feel better now?

    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/37330/revere-the-beard-efficiency-metrics-and-the-actual-value-of-james-harden

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