NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The New Orleans Pelicans began interviewing candidates to become the club's new general manager on Thursday, a person familiar with the process said.
The list of candidates includes current Pelicans interim general manager Danny Ferry, as well as former Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin, Golden State assistant GM Larry Harris, Brooklyn Nets assistant GM Trajan Langon, Houston Rockets assistant GM Gersson Rosas and interim Washington president of basketball operations Tommy Sheppard, the person told The Associated Press.
The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the club has not announced any candidates to fill the job that opened when ninth-year GM Dell Demps was fired amid the fallout from All-Star Anthony Davis' trade request.
New Orleans' next GM is expected to oversee a Davis trade — which could take place as early as this offseason — that has the potential to set the course of the franchise for years to come. That person also could decide the fate of coach Alvin Gentry.
The Pelicans' record is 32-47, and they will miss the playoffs for the third time in four years.
Ferry, who was serving as a Pelicans front office consultant the past three seasons, was tapped to fill in for Demps for at least the rest of this season. The 52-year-old has been a general manager twice before with Cleveland and Atlanta. He also worked in San Antonio's front office. He built a playoff team in Atlanta, but was bought out in 2015 amid controversy when a recording of him speaking derisively about a player's African ancestry was made public. Ferry, a former Duke and NBA player, has maintained he was reading from someone else's scouting report when the recording was made.
Griffin, 45, was the Cavaliers GM from 2014 to 2017, during which LeBron James returned from Miami to Cleveland and the Cavs won an NBA title. But his contract was not renewed after the 2016-17 season and James joined the Los Angele Lakers in free agency a year later.
Harris, 56, spent nearly two decades with Milwaukee's front office, starting in scouting and working his way up to general manager from 2003 to 2007. He has been with the Warriors since 2008.
Langdon is a former Duke and NBA player who also played professionally in Europe. The 42-year-old has served as Nets assistant GM since 2016 and has helped rebuild Brooklyn into a squad that entered Thursday's games on the cusp of qualifying for the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Rosas, a native of Colombia, has more than a decade of NBA front office experience, primarily with the Houston Rockets and also has worked with USA Basketball as an international player scout.
Sheppard stepped into his current interim post this week after the Wizards' fired Ernie Grunfeld, and it is unclear how the 50-year-old's potential for advancement with his current team could affect his interest in joining the Pelicans.