Who is Tim Connelly?

On Monday morning it was revealed that Tim Connelly, former assistant general manager of the New Orleans Hornets, would be the Denver Nuggets’ new Vice President of Basketball Operations. Not much is known about Connelly at this time in terms of his abilities. Those talents can only be revealed after he has assumed his (somewhat titular) GM position in Denver and made moves that can be analyzed. Here is what we do know about his background…

From Benjamin Hochman of the Denver Post:

Connelly, like Ujiri, is known for his international scouting abilities and has a vast basketball background… “His reputation around the league as a front-office rising star is spot-on,” said Chicago Bulls assistant general manager Brian Hagen, who worked with Connelly in New Orleans. “I think the world of him. He’s a class act who is hard-working, smart and will have a plan and process in place for the Nuggets’ continued success.”… Connelly, 36, joined New Orleans in 2010 after working as the director of player personnel for the Washington Wizards. In New Orleans he worked under Dell Demps. Connelly first got his first NBA experience in 1996, working as an intern for the Wizards. After graduating from Catholic University in Washington D.C. in 1999, he was hired by the Wizards as the assistant video coordinator. He became a scout the following season.

From the Nuggets homepage on NBA.com:

Connelly, 36, joins the Nuggets front office after three seasons as assistant general manager of the New Orleans Pelicans, where he worked closely with general manager Dell Demps. Connelly’s duties included scouting, draft preparation, trade negotiations and player contracts… Prior to his time in New Orleans, Connelly spent 10 years with the Washington Wizards organization, rising to director of player personnel. His role included overseeing scouting, salary cap and database management, player evaluation and assisting the vice president of player personnel with all front office duties… A native of Baltimore, Connelly began working with the Wizards as an intern in the basketball operations department in 1996 and joined the team full-time as the assistant video coordinator in 1999. He became a full-time scout in 2000 and spent four years in that role before becoming the director of player personnel… Connelly has strong international connections, having traveled globally to identify talent around the world. He currently serves on the board of the GEN Basketball Academy, a Sarajevo-based academy funded by NATO, and has assisted with their youth camps… In addition, Connelly has also worked as an instructor at the NBA’s “Basketball Without Borders” program in Moscow, Russia, last year. His first experience with the program took place in South Africa in 2006. That same summer, he was involved with the Seed Academy in Dakar, Senegal.

From Yahoo!Sports.com’s Adrian Wojnarowski:

Connelly, 36, has been considered one of the league’s rising young executive stars and will move immediately into the Nuggets’ search for a coach and preparation for the NBA draft and free agency… Nuggets CEO Josh Kroenke plans to work closely with Connelly in reshaping the Nuggets’ front office and building upon a 57-victory team that earned the third seed in the Western Conference playoffs… Connelly is part of a younger generation of league executives moving into top management positions and has been compared favorably to Orlando’s Rob Hennigan and Phoenix’s Ryan McDonough as part of the league’s next crop of bright young minds… After learning that his best internal candidate, Pete D’Alessandro, had left to take the Sacramento Kings GM job late last week, Kroenke targeted Connelly and moved quickly to hire him over the weekend, sources said.

And lastly, from Scott Hastings’ Twitter account:

Screen Shot 2013-06-17 at 4.41.47 PM

Reaction: All signs point to this being a good hire. As a Nuggets fan, that’s really all you can ask for. I’ve argued repeatedly that a youth movement (or, more specifically, those who are seen as “up and comers” in the NBA) would be in the best interest of the Nuggets franchise moving forward. Why? Because up and comers are hungry. They’ve paid their dues. They’ve earned the respect of their peers and have fought for years to get to the top. Moving up the talent-evaluator echelon of an NBA franchise is no easy task. With millions of dollars at stake, (most) franchises understand which types of people will ensure perpetual success. So it’s no coincidence that up and comers are usually very bright people. By all accounts, Tim Connolly is one of these types.

The great thing for Nuggets fans is that Connelly’s talent will be on display immediately, starting with whom he chooses as head coach to replace George Karl and whom he selects with the 27th pick of the NBA Draft. Not long after that Connelly will be hit with the ominous task of persuading Andre Iguodala to re-sign with the Nuggets, while at the same time not overpaying him. The upcoming offseason will present many challenges for the rookie GM, but undoubtedly, no move would score more brownie points with Nuggets fans than finding another team to take on Andre Miller and the last year of his contract. That would be the definition of starting off on the right foot.

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Kalen Deremo

Kalen was born in Durango, CO, in 1988 and graduated from Metropolitan State University of Denver in 2013 with a degree in journalism. He's now an itinerant hoping to travel as much as possible before eventually succumbing to the "real world." Aside from writing Kalen likes movies, music, spicy food and the great outdoors. Edward Abbey is his current idol.

Latest posts by Kalen Deremo (see all)

  • toluene hawk

    Before the 14 year old’s and jean-short’s storm in here with comments regarding TC’s work history (Wizards, Hornets), I would like to point out that Masai Ujuri worked for the “Toronto Raptors” before being hired as Nuggets GM.

    • http://www.chrisreinhard.com Christopher Reinhard

      I’m with this. Lots of promising young professionals work for shitty companies before moving on to bigger opportunities. After reading all the reviews above, I look forward to seeing who this guy is.

    • Gordon

      What’s wrong with jean-shorts? Elitist snob, you are. Jean shorts give me the ventilation I need for the summer, combined with the sophistication I need for a night on the town.

      • Tyler Stevens

        Thats just so off LMFAO. I can’t even remember when jean shorts were cool.

      • BigOl

        Especially with my business in the front, party in the back hair cut!

        • LBJ

          I think hawk maybe on to something. Maybe Joshy and Timmy were reminiscing about their jean shorts during the interview!

    • http://Twitter.com/A_Rodriguez8 D3Ntilthe3ND

      I don’t think there’s any 14 year olds on this forum at all lol.

      I’m with you on the jean-shorts, fuckin nerds.

  • Paul Griggs

    Discouraging looking resume…why can’t the Nuggets attract better talent? Ujiri left Denver for a basketball blackhole..,

  • Mikey K

    Moving Andre Miller should alone win him Executive of the Year.

    • Henry Hughes

      Okay, now that is funny. Seriously. Big ol’ thumbs up.

  • Ernie

    I want to understand why Josh wanted Tim C (New Orleans up and comer) over Pete D (Denver’s up and comer from last week, now in Sacremento). To the extent the bloggers here can answer that question I would appreciate it. And I really hope it has something to do with basketball vs. cost.

    • Josh Chin

      Judging by how things have been the past couple months, it seems the Josh Kroenke takes too long to make decisions. He was too hesitant and relaxed about resigning Masai, and has booked meetings with Hollins and Shaw pretty late compared to other teams who have expressed interest. He probably was too slow in executing a deal with Pete, but this is just my thought. Sorry its not very advanced knowledge.

      • Ernie

        That is an interesting take. My sense was that the Kroenke’s have this rule about letting a contract play out, and so it was more philisophical vs hesitent with Masai. Not great either way, but would reveal more about possible future issues.
        If any of you get rich enough to buy a team please do not put your son in charge at any time. There is not a lot of history of success with that model.

    • Mikey K

      I don’t even think it’s that. It’s just an absolute house-cleaning. I don’t think Josh had any intention of giving D’Alessandro the job. We had stories printed with confirmed sources that there’d be a press conference to announce it last week that never materialized.

      Masai, Karl, Pete. It’s Josh pretty much saying that he isn’t standing still. He wants it his way and maybe the people under him have been standing in the way. Masai and Karl both expressed this team mentality and no superstar. It is clear you need at least 1-1/2 to win a Championship and neither Karl nor Masai were going to do it. Pete’s a disciple of Masai. Nothing was changing.

      Now maybe they have a chance to do so.

      • Ernie

        I understand it was a housecleaning, but your reasons don’t make sense to me. You think Masai and/or Karl were capable of bringing a superstar here but refused to do it? That goes against what Masai said in the Anthony trade, “We got killed”.

        They expressed a team mentality because that was their only option. I can’t really believe either LaBron nor Durant was available. Or any reasonable facsimile. Who do you think they could have gotten but chose not to?

        • LBJ

          I smell another Jerry Jones type owner.

        • Mikey K

          Who knows what discussion took place behind closed doors. Maybe there wasn’t one specific guy in mind, but the theory in general that would mean Masai wouldn’t even make any cursory phone calls and see who was up for a game of Let’s Make A Deal.

          Deals are going to get made this off-season of guys going into their final seasons and at the trade deadline. Maybe Josh felt that the current people would be too keen on sitting on their hands instead making a splash.

  • steve

    This doesn’t have much to do with new GM. but found the article and figured this is the newest article on here so it will be seen by more. Just a great article about entire nugs situation:


  • tjorda23

    I hate to see so much turnover in the front office/coaching in the same year. But I am excited to get a new group of guys in, and work on this team together. I am excited to see the direction we go. I am really hoping that we improve our half court game, which is something Karl seemed not interested in. Can we move A.Miller to Utah in a sign and trade to Utah for Jefferson or Milsap?.. That is the direction I would go.. Shed Miller and Post it up! Not have Miller doing the posting up. I could not take another year of that..

  • will

    Maybe Miami will trade D-Wade for Andre Miller, McGee and our 27th pick.

    • Mikey K

      Only if Pat Riley drank all the champagne in the locker room last night…