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Thursday, October 23, 2014

Blazers Fire GM on Draft Night. Huh?

The Portland Trail Blazers gave GM Kevin Pritchard the ultimate eff you on Thursday, firing him the night of the draft. According to The Oregonian, the draft night execution was more vicious than what Pritchard was expecting; he thought he would be let go two days after the draft. I guess owner Paul Allen is more ruthless than we thought. Pritchard engineered the 2006 draft day trades that brought Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge to Portland, making him chiefly responsible for the team’s turnaround. Sure he might have screwed up the Greg Oden pick, but Pritchard did a good job in Portland. So why was he fired? From Jason Rapid Quick:

Thursday’s firing appeared to come down to a personality conflict, a strife that became apparent to Pritchard late in the season when he was told he was no longer welcome to sit next to [owner Paul] Allen during games at the Rose Garden. Pritchard at times wondered if Allen had become jealous of his popularity and the credit he received, even though Pritchard insisted he never wanted the attention.

There you have Pritch’s side of the story which seems to make sense. As for Allen’s side, well he lets his firings do the talking. People are saying that Allen’s treatment of Pritchard will make it tough for Portland to hire a new, good GM, but I disagree. With that roster and the money Allen can offer, there should be plenty of takers. The question is whether someone else can do what Pritchard was able to with that roster. Now that’s the difficult question, and I say it will be tough to duplicate.

Sources:
Trail Blazers’ firing of Kevin Pritchard comes earlier than expected, but questions remain unanswered [The Oregonian]



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