The Philadelphia 76ers officially named former player Elton Brand as the team’s new general manager on Thursday.
News initially broke on Tuesday that the team would promote Brand, who was previously the 76ers’ vice president of basketball operations and GM of the G League affiliate Delaware Blue Coats, to fill its vacant GM position.
In a statement, Brand called the promotion “a tremendous honor.” He continued, “I’ve had the privilege of playing for this team and these amazing fans, so I understand and embrace the expectations. I’m excited to help accelerate the development of our dynamic young core and watch them continue to come together as a team and reach new heights. This is a special team, an incredible opportunity, and we will lead a disciplined and determined path to building a championship organization.”
Brand, 39, reportedly impressed both team ownership and head coach Brett Brown — who also had been serving as interim GM — during the team’s extended interview process, one that raised eyebrows around the league for lasting months past the NBA draft in June as well as the start of free agency in July.
Brand beat out several reported candidates who interviewed, both internally and externally. Last month the Sixers reportedly interviewed Golden State Warriors assistant general manager Larry Harris, Utah Jazz assistant GM Justin Zanik and Houston Rockets vice president Gersson Rosas. Other in-house candidates reportedly included 76ers assistant GM Ned Cohen and player personnel exec Marc Eversley.
The search began after Bryan Colangelo resigned in June on the heels of a controversy surrounding Twitter burner accounts used to critique players and share privileged information.
“[Brand] is a unique talent who is intelligent, hardworking and has an incredible feel for the game,” managing partner Josh Harris said in a statement. “This is a player’s league and Elton’s strong relationships and commitment to culture are very important as we grow this team. We’re excited to have him as our GM as we work toward our goal of winning an NBA championship.”
The 1999 No. 1 overall pick, Brand played 17 NBA seasons, including 263 games across two stints for the 76ers, retiring after 17 games with Philadelphia in 2015-16.
–Field Level Media