In an expected follow-up to John Hammond's three year extension to remain as Bucks' GM, Gery Woelfel reports that Milwaukee has similarly given assistant GM Jeff Weltman a new deal of the same duration. Weltman has served as Hammond's right-hand man since joining the Bucks a week after Hammond's appointment in April 2008, having previously worked with Hammond in Detroit and Los Angeles.
Weltman interviewed for GM jobs with the Suns and Clippers over the past two seasons, and it wouldn't surprise anyone if he one day ends up with a GM job of his own in the near future. Like most assistant GMs, Weltman has generally been a behind-the-scenes guy during his tenure with the Bucks, though we''ve occasionally heard him on the radio and in pre-draft interviews during the summer. But don't let Weltman's low public profile fool you.
Alex conducted a lengthy interview with Weltman before the 11/12 season (Part I / Part II), and it reflects the kind of guy Weltman is: thoughtful, analytical, and intelligent, though simultaneously modest and somewhat unassuming. Like Hammond, Weltman's as nice a guy as you'll find in the NBA, but he also complements Hammond with an analytical, new school approach that has quietly helped turn the Bucks into one of the more forward-thinking teams in the league.
The son of former Hawks' GM Harry Weltman, Jeff began his NBA career way back in 1988 as the Clippers' video coordinator, and all told the 48-year-old has now spent more than half his life in various NBA front office positions. In L.A. he eventually worked his way up to director of player personnel before serving five years as assistant GM under Kiki Vandeweghe in Denver. He later joined Hammond as director of basketball administration in Detroit, and followed him to Milwaukee one year later.