After making their first postseason appearance in 6 years – score one for The Process, the 76ers should still have that “high on life” buzz as they get ready for the NBA draft.
But that was before The Ringer produced a report allegedly tying team president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo to several anonymous twitter accounts tweeting negative things about current team players.
The article makes a pretty good case that Colangelo knew about the anonymous Twitter accounts. Plus, people around the NBA have said that the context of the tweets by the anonymous accounts is consistent with what Colangelo has said in other conversations.
But let’s go ahead and give him the benefit of the doubt and believe that he didn’t tweet or direct anyone (his wife) to tweet on his behalf. Okay, fine. Those tweets still represented things he said in conversations.
He still needs to go.
For all of the progress the 76ers made this year with the postseason appearance, the development of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, the team will require firm management decisions made by someone who isn’t worried about Sam Hinkie’s shadow. None of the above behavior supports a solid foundation with which to base strategic decisions.
- What happens if the Joel Embiid-Ben Simmons relationship starts to fray a bit? Sure, things are great now, but there are examples of two dynamic players not getting along in the long run: Shaq and Penny Hardaway, Shaq and Kobe, Kyrie and LeBron etc. Do either Embiid or Simmons believe anything Colangelo brings to the table? How could they?
- How does he carry on with Markelle Fultz, the player he chose instead of Jayson Tatum? Will Fultz regain confidence in his shot? While the choice is defensible, he unnecessarily gave up a first rounder to get in position to take Fultz.
Not only did Colangelo allegedly go after Sam Hinkie and the players via the tweets, but he also made disparaging remarks about Toronto Raptors general manager Masai Ujiri. Of course, he did – Ujiri succeeded him as general manager in Toronto.
Was Bryan Colangelo the right candidate for the job in the first place? His dad, Jerry Colangelo, was chairman of basketball operations for the 76ers when Bryan was hired as president of basketball operations. Oh, Jerry stepped down as soon as his son was hired. Let’s move along – nothing to see here.
Final scorecard: lack of trust, no self-confidence, and hired by his dad – what are you waiting for, Philly?
UPDATE: tasked with investigating Colangelo’s involvement with the Twitter accounts, the law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP concluded that Bryan Colangelo was the source of the reckless, non-public, club-sensitive information used by the Twitter accounts. Bryan Colangelo agreed to resign from his position as president of basketball operations for the Philadelphia 76ers June 7, 2018. But he did not go quietly.
On his way out, instead of showing a little humility with his parting statement, he not only denied any wrongdoing, but he also doubled-down on the shady side of life by throwing his wife under the bus. Apparently, his wife was the mastermind behind providing content for all of the burner accounts. He also pointed out that the content was not an accurate description of his true thoughts. (Sure, Bryan…) These actions are not exactly prime examples of quality characteristics for a leader.
The Philadelphia 76ers made the right decision.