Golliver: Rich Cho to be named GM

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From Ben Golliver of Blazersedge on Twitter:

Rich Cho will be announced today as Portland’s next General Manager.

That’s what you call damage control. Cho was easily the best candidate of the bunch, coming out of Sam Presti’s system in Oklahoma City, and probably the most similar to Kevin Pritchard. That said, in being similar to KP, we’ll see now whether he can appease Paul Allen with that “one big move” people in the organization seem to be clamoring for. But today, finally, the Blazers made the smart choice.

ESPN’s John Hollinger has this to say:

Took ‘em long enough, but an excellent hire.

It should go without saying that most of the national press is going to be positive about this move, as Cho has been touted for a long time for being a forward thinker and accepting of more modern statistical analysis. Portland’s place at SLOAN should remain on lock.

This move also gives you reason to have more of a positive outlook on Portland’s front office situation, as they are taking a risk on the unknown — though Cho’s credentials are rock solid — rather than going the safe route with a GM retread. Nothing irks me more than teams taking the easy way with the latter route, so, despite how poorly everything was handled around Pritchard, the Blazers really deserve credit for this.

UPDATE: Here’s video from the team with Cho and Mike Barrett:

And part of the official press release from the same page:

The Portland Trail Blazers have named Rich Cho as the team’s new general manager, Trail Blazers President Larry Miller announced today. Per team policy, financial details were not disclosed.

“Rich is the perfect fit for our organization,” said Larry Miller, Trail Blazers president. “He has the right balance of basketball knowledge, business acumen and tremendous people skills. Everyone I spoke to about Rich commented not just on his qualifications but on who he is as a person. He is well known for his ability to connect genuinely with people. Rich will be a great fit for our organization and for Portland. He is an executive on the rise and we’re thrilled to have him as a Trail Blazer.”

Cho, who becomes the ninth general manager in Trail Blazers history, joins the Trail Blazers after spending the past nine seasons as assistant general manager of the Seattle SuperSonics/Oklahoma City Thunder.

“I am extremely humbled and grateful for this opportunity, and I will do everything I can to help this great team get even better,” said Rich Cho. “When I met with Mr. Allen, Larry Miller, and coach McMillan, it was immediately apparent to me that this organization has an incredible commitment to winning. As someone who grew up in the northwest, I’m aware of the unbelievable passion and support that Trail Blazers fans have, and I’m excited to be a part of this rich tradition.”

Larry Miller wrote a letter to Blazer fans — here’s a statement from Paul Allen to boot — explaining the hire and some of the hiring process:

It is my pleasure to introduce you to the Trail Blazers new general manager, Rich Cho. Staying true to our commitment to Portland, our top priorities in this process were to find someone who has the proven abilities to be a leader in our business and in our community. Our search was dedicated to finding a person we knew could immediately take over the daily management of our team and basketball staff while focusing keenly on taking us to next level as a serious NBA contender. I am convinced Rich Cho is that person.

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Tags: General Managers Kevin Pritchard Paul Allen Portland Trail Blazers Rich Cho

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