The New Orleans Pelicans separated from general manager Dell Demps, the team announced on Friday, paving the way for a new prominent basketball executive business talks by Anthony Davis.
Demps had been a GM pelican for nine years, which included three trips to the playoffs but only progressed once after the first round.
"I would like to express my appreciation to Dell for his tireless work and commitment to our team over the past eight years," said the owner of the pelicans Gayle Benson in a statement. "Dell, his wife Anita and his family have given credit to our city and wish them only the greatest success in the future."
The former Cleveland Cavaliers and Atlanta Hawks GM Danny Ferry, a consultant for the Pelicans, has been named a provisional GM for the team. The New Orleans assistant, GM David Booth, was also considered for the interim role, sources said.
"My goal for the rest of the season is to provide leadership to our group of basketball operations and give [coach] Alvin [Gentry] and our players the resources and support to positively influence the culture and the foundations now and in the future, "Ferry said in a statement.
For now, Gentry and his staff are safe, sources said. The organization was pleased with how it has sailed the team in difficult circumstances this year, and it is expected that the season will end, sources said.
Gentry's future will probably depend on the vision of the next GM. Gentry signed an extension of the contract in the offseason.
The Pellicani star Anthony Davis suffered a muscular bruise in his left shoulder Thursday against the thunder but "not bad," said a source to Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.
Benson was angry at Davis's business request and his belief that "external forces" are trying to push the franchise into decisions that make no sense, sources said.
His mandate was to "regain control from external forces", an alloy source told ESPN. Benson has been adamant with the organization on finding a path to win sustainably in one of the smaller league markets and plans to be aggressive in pursuing the best candidates available to oversee basketball operations, sources said of the league.
restructuring process of our basketball operations department, "said Benson." This will include a comprehensive but confidential search, helped by external consultants to identify a new leader of our basketball operations, referring directly to me. "
Among the possible preliminary candidates, League sources say to ESPN: former Cleveland GM David Griffin
Benson owns the pelicans and the Saints of New Orleans and reports the Demps to the Saints GM Mickey Loomis Pelicans are keen to conduct research that will attract a high-ranking basketball executive who will take on more prominent role in the franchise.Benson promises to pursue a high-level GM to revitalize a franchise that is gaining ground with trade Davis.
Davis can become a free agent in July 2020 but has publicly requested a trade on January 28. The pelicans have refused to quarrel with the Lakers, who made offers in the hope of landing Davis before the February 7 deadline.
The Pelicans have endured a series of exchanges and missed draws that have exhausted the roster of a sustainable path for long-term success, but Benson hopes the team remains competitive this season.
"My expectations and expectations of our fans are that this team will compete at a high level for the rest of the season," Benson said.
The team is 26-33 after beating the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday night, but there are six games behind the Clippers of LA for the last spot of the Western Conference season.