SAN FRANCISCO — Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob couldn’t understand why Bob Myers — his general manager and president for the past 12 years — decided to step down.
“I’m not going to sit here and tell you I understand that because I don’t,” Lacob said, sitting next to Myers at a news conference at the Chase Center on Tuesday.
It’s only been four hours since Myers told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski that he’ll be leaving when his contract expires at the end of June.
Lacob continued, “But it’s not really for me to understand why. I just want him to be happy.”
Myers’ decision took into account a lot of factors, including a desire to spend more time with his family. He crushed the notion that it was due to the Warriors’ turbulent and mediocre season.
“If the team won the championship, would you leave? I think, yes,” Myers said. He told Wojnarowski it wasn’t about the money, saying he had turned down ownership offers in a new deal that would have paid him in the same range as the league’s top executives. It’s not about a new job waiting for him – he said he’d take a minute to sit still before making his next move.
“Bottom line, this job, the job I’m at … requires full involvement, full effort, a thousand percent, and if you can’t do it, you shouldn’t do it,” Myers said. . “That’s the answer to the question why. I can’t do that to our players. I can’t do that to Joe and Peter [Guber]. Really, I can’t do it myself. And that’s the question I’ve been grappling with.”
The next natural question for warriors is: Where do they go from here?
At Tuesday’s press conference, Lacob did not address any clear plans for a successor to Myers. But Lacob is expected to seek more prominent roles for his son Kirk, executive vice president of basketball operations, and vice president of basketball operations Mike Dunleavy Jr., according to Lognarovsky. Talks to promote an insider—particularly the younger Dunleavy and Lacob—continued for weeks as the team braced for the very real possibility that Myers might leave.
“[Dunleavey is] As a good GM, if he wanted to, that would be great,” Myers said.
“I will say we have a very strong organization, and there’s a good possibility that you could be an insider candidate,” Lacob said. “But you haven’t made up your mind, so I can’t really give you an answer. We’ll work on that.”
The insider promotion plan also stems from the potential inability to recruit a senior outside general manager, sources said, as power struggles within the Warriors have become an issue, particularly between the front office and ownership. The power dynamic will continue to evolve and become less disconnected as the Warriors franchise can become more of a family business.
Lakob said he would continue to work with Myers through the end of his contract in late June. However, it is unclear who will assume the leadership role during the draft process with the draft being implemented on June 22. Myers said he will act in a support role.
“We’ll make a decision as quickly as possible, but I want to make sure we make the right decision, and if it happens in a week, great. If it happens in a month, great,” Lacob said. “We’re going to make that decision through the natural course, we’ve got the right process. I think we’re getting ready for the draft and free agency and all that stuff regardless, and we’re going to be prepared.”
Whoever is tapped to fill Myers’ shoes has a big job awaiting them as the Warriors enter what is arguably the franchise’s most important season in modern history.
Draymond Green has a $27.6 million player option waiting for him which, if he declines, would make him an unrestricted free agent. Klay Thompson is about to enter the final year of his contract. The same goes for coach Steve Kerr. Then there’s the renewal of their depth as they work with an already high salary and new CBA rules that will make it even tougher for them.
“The truth is, we have a lot of work to do,” Lacob said. “We’re going to win no matter what. I don’t care what the rules are. We’ll find a way to do it. That’s what good organizations do.”
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