Nuggets hire former Wizards executive Tim Connelly


Tim Connelly, the Denver Nuggets’ new executive vice president of basketball operations, will have to find a replacement for fired coach George Karl, above. (Associated Press)

The Denver Nuggets have hired former Wizards executive Tim Connelly as the team’s new executive vice president of basketball operations, three league sources have confirmed.

Connelly has spent the past three seasons as assistant general manager of the New Orleans Pelicans (formerly Hornets) after a previous stint as Wizards director of player personnel.

After starting out as a Wizards intern 1996, Connelly was hired by Washington as assistant video coordinator three years later upon his graduation from Catholic University. In Washington, Connelly helped oversee scouting, salary cap and database management.

Connelly, 36, has long been considered one of the rising young executives and joined General Manager Dell Demps in New Orleans in August 2010. He will work closely with Nuggets President Josh Kroenke in restructuring an organization that has undergone significant changes since losing to the Golden State Warriors in the first round of the NBA playoffs.

Denver fired former coach George Karl after he led to team to nine straight playoff appearances. Connelly will replace Masai Ujiri, who left the Nuggets to become general manager of the Toronto Raptors after being named NBA executive of the year.

The Nuggets also lost assistant general manager Pete D’Allesandro, who became general manager of the Sacramento Kings. Connelly will have to hire a new coach and find a way to retain forward Andre Iguodala, who opted out his contract to become an unrestricted free agent.

Flip Saunders, the former Wizards coach and current Minnesota Timberwolves president of basketball operations, had also considered Connelly as his general manager. Connelly’s younger brother, Pat, left the Wizards last week to become assistant general manager of the Phoenix Suns.

Tim Connelly’s move to Denver was first reported by Yahoo! Sports.

Michael Lee is the national basketball writer for The Washington Post.
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Michael Lee | June 16, 2013