Source: Hot Stove New York.
The New York Knicks hired 1999 NBA Executive of the Year, Peter Gabriel as their new director of pro scouting and free agency. Gabriel was the General Manager for the Orlando Magic from 1996 to 2004. He was responsible for hiring Doc Rivers who won Coach of the Year honors. Gabriel also selected 2000 Rookie of the Year, Mike Miller 5th overall in the draft that year
Gabriel had an active off-season in 2000 by acquiring Tracy McGrady in a sign and trade with the Toronto Raptors. T-Mac averaged 26.8 points per game in his first full season with the Magic. Gabriel also traded Chucky Atkins and Ben Wallace for Grant Hill along with nearly obtaining Tim Duncan. Gabriel offered him a six year, $67.5 million dollar deal which Duncan considered before re-signing with the San Antonio Spurs
Gabriel was let go during the 2003-2004 campaign in which the team was in the middle of a franchise record-19 game losing steak. The Magic finished with 21 wins that season which was their lowest total since the 1991-1992 season. Gabriel was currently working for the Portland Trailblazers as an administrator and scout. The Blazers have a young and talented roster full of team chemistry. Gabriel will bring his experience and knowledge from Portland to a Knicks team that needs to find an identity.
The position was newly created by Team President, Donnie Walsh who has revamped the Knicks front office during the off-season. Walsh and Gabriel share the same agent in Steve Kaufman. It was rumored that Gabriel would replace Glen Grunwald as general manager. Grunwald is the lone person leftover from Isiah Thomas’s dismal regime. Walsh has done a good job at eliminating any trace of the former coach’s administration. Ironically head coach Mike D’Antoni worked as a scout for Gabriel when they were both with the Philadelphia 76ers.
The main duties of Gabriel will be evaluating future trades and free agent signings. The team is serious about getting under the salary cap in two seasons to make to make a run at the loaded superstar crop of free agents in 2010
Walsh also hired Misho Ostarcevic, who will be the director of player personnel. Ostarcevic served under Walsh in Indiana as an international scout. He is replacing Brandon Suhr, who was Thomas’s director of player personnel.
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