Bryan Colangelo ’87 accepted a position as president and general manager of the Toronto Raptors yesterday. He will replace Rob Babcock, who was fired by the Raptors on Jan. 26. Colangelo, the NBA’s Executive of the Year after the 2004-05 season, resigned as the Phoenix Suns’ general manager and president on Monday.
Colangelo was responsible for assembling the Suns roster that won a league-high 62 games last season. His departure from the organization ends a 17-year affiliation with Phoenix, the past 11 as the team’s general manager.
Family ties run deep in Phoenix for Colangelo, as his father, Jerry, was the team’s original general manager when the team was founded in 1968. Jerry is currently the chairman and CEO of the Suns, although that could change after a group led by managing partner Robert Sarver takes over ownership after the 2006-07 season.
Colangelo currently makes close to $1 million per year, but says Sarver’s group had not offered him a contract extension beyond his current contract that expires in a year and a half.
The Raptors have reportedly signed Colangelo to a multi-year contract worth $3 million per year, and are willing to give him greater control over basketball operations than he had in Phoenix.
The Raptors, who have had three general managers and three coaches over the course of the last three years, have improved since a 1-15 start to the season and are currently fourth in the Atlantic Division. Colangelo leaves a Suns team that he helped construct and that presently leads the Pacific Division and is in possession of the league’s fourth-best record.