Koby Altman is Not a Good GM
Koby Altman took the job of Cleveland Cavaliers GM to begin the 2017 basketball season. At the time, Koby Altman was younger than 2 Cavs players and only 2 years older than the foundation of the franchise, LeBron James. Koby Altman's resume? Player at a Division III school in Vermont. Assistant Coach for 6 years at non-basketball schools. The Cavs front office.
You know who's had more experience in front offices that would have made a good GM here? Nearly all the members of the 1989 Detroit Pistons. Would I have taken Laimbeer as GM over Altman? Yes.
Isiah Thomas? Yes.
Joe Dumars? Hell yes.
Rick Mahorn? Yes.
John Salley? Yes.
Dennis Rodman? Probably not.
And that's just one team, one year, of potential candidates Gilbert passed up on. So Koby Altman inherited a team with, arguably, 2 of the Top 10 or 15 players in the NBA with Kyrie Irving and LeBron James. In one year, both players were gone.
I don't want to hear ifs and buts. The NBA is not about assembling a team. You get the 2 or 3 of the best players in the league on your team and you win. It's really that simple. The NBA isn't like any other team sport in North America, where it's about team building. It is the GM's job to keep your best players happy. Koby Altman failed in that job. Miserably.
The first 2 players he chose in his first drafts were Darius Garland and Colin Sexton. Both are nice players, but in last month's Top 100 NBA Players list at CBS Sports, the Cavs only had one player currently on their roster make the cut and that was Kevin Love at #77. The perpetually injured Kevin Love. The third player Koby Altman chose, Kevin Porter Jr., at the end of the first round of the 2019 draft, was just traded to Houston for nothing.
Seriously. It is time to remove the poles from the Cavs' Tents and give up. Fold. Move to Seattle. Whatever. Let's say that Garland and Sexton both reach their potential in about 5-7 years. That means the ceiling for the Cavs are teams going 46-36 and losing in the first round of the playoffs.
What year is this? 2021? The Cavs aren't returning to the Eastern Conference finals until, at least, 2040. Maybe 2050. Kyrie, LeBron, and Koby (Altman) killed this franchise. Instead of killing it quick, like blunt force trauma to the head, Kyrie, LeBron, and Koby (Altman) left the franchise in a ditch to bleed out.
If Dan Gilbert's dream is to build another Championship TEAM, he should sell the Cavs. Personally I would like the Cavs to stay in Cleveland, but if they didn't, I would understand. Irving made a business decision, LeBron made a business decision, and Altman makes horrible business decisions. Gilbert should make a sports decision.
Cleveland Indians fans desperately want Dan Gilbert to buy the Cleveland Baseball Team. Why would he do that? I think that if Dan Gilbert sold the Cavs for market value (supposedly $1.5 billion) and then turned around and offered 2.5 billion for the Lions, that the Ford family couldn't pass up that deal. With the Lions committing to build through the NFL Draft, if Gilbert put his passion and resources into the Lions, they could be a Super Bowl contender in 5-7 years.
And, business-wise, he would drive the value of the Lions way up. If you think I'm being negative and the Cavs will be fine in a few years? The stigma of LeBron leaving TWICE will stain the franchise for a generation. Why did he leave twice?
You know the person partially responsible.
But did LeBron leave strictly based on team building philosophies, or due to politics? You'd have to ask him yourself. If LeBron was driven by politics and you know it, Gilbert has to sell the team. You can't have what's going on with the Atlanta Dream happen here. You are screaming at your monitor that Koby Altman can only do what Dan Gilbert tells him?
You just made my point why he's a bad GM.
If your argument is that Koby Altman turned Kyrie Irving turned into Colin Sexton through trades, I will listen to that argument. Then you'd have to listen to my argument that Altman turned LeBron into nothing and productive Kevin Love into injured Kevin Love.
The NBA is 74.2% Black and the league dictates the rules in which a player is eligible to play in the NBA. Almost every article I researched mentioned that Koby Altman is one of the only Black GM's in the league. I want to shake Dan Gilbert, "you should have hired Joe Dumars!"
But that's besides the point. If the NBA wanted to solve the problems of underrepresentation of minorities in league front offices, all they would have to do is install a rule that every team in the league either has to have a GM or President with 1 year of NBA playing experience. I guarantee you that within 10 years that the number of GMs and Presidents would triple from their current numbers.
And Koby Altman would be out on his ass.