Pistons coach/president Stan Van Gundy is about to make his first major front-office hire, according to published reports.
As Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski first reported Monday morning, Van Gundy is close to an agreement with former New Orleans Hornets GM Jeff Bower to become Detroit’s general manager. Bower spent 14 years with the franchise in Charlotte and New Orleans, including serving as the team’s general manager in 2002-03 and again from 2005-10.
Bower is best known for building a talented, young roster while the team was exiled to Oklahoma City for two seasons after Hurricane Katrina. He traded Baron Davis and built the roster around his first draft pick — Chris Paul — in his second stint as general manager.
By surrounding Paul with players like Peja Stojakovic, David West and Tyson Chandler, Bower had the team ready to win a division title when they returned to New Orleans in 2007.
As Pistons GM, Bower is expected to handle the day-to-day functions of the front office, leaving Van Gundy free to coach the team and make roster decisions.
Given Bower’s strong performance building the Hornets, it’s likely that he would be Van Gundy’s top advisor on roster moves, while also supervising the scouting and video departments and working with the team’s salary-cap experts.