76ers news: NBA Draft convinced Elton Brand to become Delaware 87ers GM
Elton Brand has taken big steps since retiring from the NBA last season, but none bigger than the one he took Monday morning, becoming the new general manager of the Philadelphia 76ers G-League affiliate, Delaware 87ers.
The 17-year NBA veteran spent five seasons in the City of Brotherly Love, including his last one, as one of the most influential veteran presences for a team with abundant young talent and not enough experience around it.
The 38-year-old now enters this phase of his post-pro career into a different, yet familiar field — one he wasn’t sure he would fit into until he immersed himself into the process of interviewing players and seeing them in action.
“What really did it for me was going to Chicago [for the NBA Draft combine in May] and interviewing these young men, going to Utah [in July] seeing the summer league, being there at draft night [in June],” Brand told Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Team president Bryan Colangelo gave him “amazing” access, one he used to tap into his potential as an executive.
“I wasn’t sure if I [would] like working in basketball,” Brand said. “But I enjoyed it. So when the opportunity came, I took it.”
Brand has been a humble worker throughout his entire career, despite being drafted with the top overall pick in 1999 by the Chicago Bulls, making this the ideal spot for him to start this new venture.
“I’m still going to learn from Bryan Colangelo and the Sixers’ management and staff,” Brand said. “But I’m the [87ers’] GM and basically calling the shots and everything down there. I have to hire [an assistant] coach. I have a lot on my plate.”
“It’s an amazing opportunity.”
Brand will now see the organization develop from as deep as the farm system, an opportunity which can soon develop into a spot next to Colangelo with the 76ers if he proves successful during his tenure in the G-League.