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Blazers president Larry Miller steps down

Jul 7, 2012, 2:44 PM EDT

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Larry Miller lost a power struggle. When Neil Olshey was hired as the new general manager of the Portland Trail Blazers, it was considered to somewhat be a loss for President Larry Miller who was against the hire. Today that process came full circle as Miller stepped down as President of the Blazers. From the Presser:

Larry Miller has resigned as President of the Portland Trail Blazers to take a job with a Portland-area company, the team announced on Saturday.
“I greatly enjoyed my time with the Portland Trail Blazers,” said Larry Miller. “It was an incredible experience and I’ll be forever grateful to Paul Allen for giving me the opportunity and honor to lead what I believe to be one of the best teams in all of sports.”
Under Miller’s leadership, the Trail Blazers recorded three consecutive trips to the postseason from 2009-11 for the first time since 2001-03. The Trail Blazers won 54 games and shared the Northwest Division crown in 2008-09, the team’s first division title since 1998-99.
“The timing is right,” said Miller. “We have an excellent general manager in place in Neil Olshey, so I feel the team is on solid ground and headed in the right direction. Off the court, business is great. The Rose Garden is packed every night and the passion of Trail Blazers fans has never been better.”
Also since Miller’s arrival, the Trail Blazers are riding a streak of 192 consecutive sellouts, dating back to Dec. 21, 2007. Portland has led the Western Conference in average home attendance for each of the past four seasons.
“It is sad to see Larry leaving the Blazers and I want to thank him for his leadership and contributions to the franchise,” said Owner Paul Allen . “Larry helped manage a period of significant growth and I wish him all the best as he takes on this opportunity.”
Also during his tenure, the Trail Blazers made significant strides in becoming a leader in sustainability among professional sports franchises. The Rose Garden became the first existing arena in the world to attain LEED Gold Certification.
With Miller’s departure, basketball operations will report through General Manager Neil Olshey and business operations will report through Chief Operating Officer Sarah Mensah. A search for a replacement for Miller will begin immediately.

Prior to joining the Trail Blazers, Miller served as President of the Jordan Brand from 1999-2006. He’s also held executive management positions with Jantzen, Kraft, Philadelphia Newspapers, Campbell’s Soup, Converse and Nike.

Miller’s departure represents yet another signature end to the Blazers era that began in 2007 and was supposed to usher in another era of contention for Portland. With Brandon Roy, LaMarcus Aldridge, and Greg Oden, many felt the Blazers would reach the toppermost of the toppermost and be a title contender for years. But injuries derailed that plan, and the Blazers have been wildly unstable for the past four years, with two general managers fired in less than two years.
It appears there’s a new power structure in place with Olshey at the top under Miller… and advisor Bert Kolde.
  1. cosanostra71 - Jul 7, 2012 at 2:50 PM

    It’s kinda crazy how things turned out for the Blazers… it seemed like they were on a similar trajectory to the Thunder… it looked like the I-5 rivalry was going to be deciding who represented the West in the Finals every year… fast forward 5 years… and the Blazers are rebuilding, and the Sonics play in Oklahoma City…

  2. Justin - Jul 7, 2012 at 2:59 PM

    Consider for a second the powerhouse that would be the Blazers had injuries not derailed that team. Roy, Batum, Oden, Aldridge, Matthews,.. I am sure I am missing a few but that is an unbelievable core to build off of.

  3. snoopy2014 - Jul 7, 2012 at 3:11 PM

    Whoa. Ominous ending. Is Bert Kolde some sort of Darth Vader type?

  4. saint1997 - Jul 7, 2012 at 11:48 PM

    I’m not a Blazers fan but if I was I wouldn’t be totally devastated. They got a good backup big in the draft and a PG who I’m really high on and could turn out to be really really good. Then with all star LaMarcus, solid Batum and (possibly) budding star Hibbert that’s a decent core.

    My point is Blazer Nation should thank their lucky stars that the rebuilding road doesn’t look as long as some of the other teams that have made draft decisions that didn’t pan out or have been faced with injury

  5. hannahsdaddy - Jul 8, 2012 at 2:30 AM

    WHOA!!!!! Larry Brown moving on?? No way!!

  6. brianbosworthisstonecold - Jul 8, 2012 at 5:02 AM

    My point is Blazer Nation

    Actually it’s, “Rip City”. To the other poster, the blazers have been rebuilding since they won a championship back in 1977.

    • deeballer - Jul 8, 2012 at 9:23 PM

      You forgot the 2 finals they went to with Porter, Drexler, Duckworth, Buck, Kersey, Robinson, and Petrovic? That team was pretty amazing with Rick Adelman as the coach.

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