In today’s edition of “How weird can the Bucks GM search get before someone is hired,” Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting that Denver Nuggets President Josh Kroenke (and son of the owner) is aggressively restructuring their front office, promoting GM Tim Connelly to President of Basketball Operations and moving one-time Bucks GM candidate Arturas Karnisovas into the GM position.
Sources: In an aggressive move to secure Denver's front office, Josh Kroenke has preempted Milwaukee's bid to hire Arturas Karnisovas as GM.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) June 14, 2017
Kroenke has promoted GM Tim Connelly to President of Basketball Operations and Karnisovas to General Manager, sources tell @TheVertical. https://t.co/o0HCflRrTH— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) June 14, 2017
This bizarre turn of events clearly illustrates Denver’s fear of losing a man who's built one of the league’s foremost international scouting departments to land Denver several prominent under-the-radar studs like Nikola Jokic. More pertinent to the still churning Bucks GM search, Woj is reporting a formal offer still has not been given to any candidates, although Justin Zanik is the last man standing after Karnisovas withdrew his name from consideration.
W/ Karnisovas and Bucks assistant GM Justin Zanik finalists, Milwaukee has yet to extend offer for GM job. Karnisovas withdrew in last hour. https://t.co/umWIbSsQwi— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) June 14, 2017
Marc Stein reported earlier in the week that Zanik and Karnisovas were the final two candidates for the gig. With Denver’s move, it appears Zanik should be a shoo-in for the job. If, by some peculiar happening (I'm not ruling it out at this point given how this has gone) Zanik does not emerge with the job, it would be a clear indictment on his qualifications in terms of the Bucks’ opinion (which is all that matters).
Hopefully this means the search should be resolved soon though, and we can all officially have a GM to blame or praise for moves this summer.