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Spurs trying to bring Danny Ferry back to their front office

Aug 11, 2010, 9:57 AM EDT

Spurs_logo.gifDanny Ferry is no Pat Riley.

Ferry spent years in Cleveland trying to build a team around LeBron James that would make the superstar happy. He built some very good teams — teams with the best record in the NBA the last two years — but not ones that could win it all. So Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert sent Ferry walking (and that really helped keep LeBron).

Now the San Antonio Spurs are trying to lure Ferry back to their front office, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.

Ferry started his front office career with the Spurs, learning their ways. Which means an owner that stays out of the basketball side, sticking with your coach and finding the right role players — not just stars — to put around your star. So, basically, the opposite of what Gilbert wanted.

Ferry interviewed in Portland and New Jersey for open general manager jobs, but both franchises went other directions.

San Antonio has room in their front office after Dell Demps left them this summer to be the head man in New Orleans. Ferry is still close with Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.

The only real question is does Ferry now want to take a season off from the game and be a family man, or jump right back in. If he jumps, the Spurs seem the likely landing spot.

  1. Jim - Aug 11, 2010 at 10:25 AM

    I’m sorry this is blatant revisionist history of how Ferry crafted his teams in Cleveland.
    1) Dan Gilbert was totally out of the limelight for Ferry’s years in Cleveland. He gave Ferry total control over creating a team in the mold of the Spurs. Windhorst wrote extensively about this. It was only when the model failed, when the Cavs were not good enough as constructed to win despite having the best record two years in a row, did Dan Gilbert come back into the picture.
    2) The Spurs were anything but a bunch of “role players” surrounded by a star. Tony Parker, Manu, and Duncan were all “stars.” The Spurs do a wonderful job of supporting those three stars with role players who work well, but its disingenuous to act like it was Tim Duncan and 4 Brian Scalabrine’s running around winning 4 titles.
    3) In contrast, in the Cleve, it was Lebron and a bunch of very good role players. Danny Ferry, despite how hard he tried, never found a Manu or Parker to help Lebron. He built an incredibly solid team around the guy (something he doesn’t get enough credit for) but was unable to find the true second banana.
    4) I’m not sure how anyone can blame the Cavs for letting Mike Brown go. Great defensive mind, horribly inept on the offensive end. He also was completely unable to make in-game adjustments. That is a fatal flaw in any sport. Brown also isn’t in the same category as Pop.

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