NBA Rumors: Nuggets' Tim Connelly Rejects Wizards' Offer to 'Run' the Team

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistMay 20, 2019

DENVER, CO - MAY 12: Denver Nuggets President Tim Connelly is seen before Game Seven of the Western Conference Semi-Finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs against the Portland Trail Blazers on May 12, 2019 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images)
Garrett Ellwood/Getty Images

Denver Nuggets president of basketball operations Tim Connelly has decided to stay with the organization despite being offered control of the Washington Wizards organization.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Connelly decided to stay in Denver after meeting with Wizards owner Ted Leonsis on Friday. Nuggets president and governor Josh Kroenke met with Connelly over the weekend and pitched him on staying in Denver.

It's unclear if Kroenke will offer Connelly a new contract. His current deal runs through the 2020-21 season and pays him around $2 million annually, per David Aldridge of The Athletic. 

Connelly has been in charge of the Nuggets' basketball operations since 2013, taking over for Masai Ujiri. While Denver missed the postseason in each of the previous five seasons, the Nuggets ascended to the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference. Every major contributor on the roster was either drafted or signed by Connelly.

Making matters even more impressive: The Nuggets have not drafted any higher than seventh during Connelly's tenure. Nikola Jokic, Gary Harris and Malik Beasley are among the talents Connelly plucked from non-lottery draft positions. (Of course, it has not all been perfect. Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell were originally drafted by Denver before being traded on draft night. The Nuggets' haul from those trades were Erick Green, Tyler Lydon and Trey Lyles.)

Despite Connelly having ties to the Wizards organization and the D.C. area, the Wizards job is clearly worse than Denver. The Wizards have not won 50 games in more than 40 years; they're also facing a potential rebuild that could begin this summer.

With John Wall recovering from an Achilles tear—and under perhaps the worst contract in the NBA—whoever the Wizards hire will need to assess how to handle Bradley Beal's future. Beal is a 25-year-old star who could help spark a rebuild if the Wizards choose to trade him. He's coming off an incredible season but is clearly not the level of player who can create a winner by himself.

Wall will likely miss all of the 2019-20 season. The Wizards may benefit from trading Beal, acquiring young talent and bottoming out for a 2020 draft class that's considered strong. After already rebuilding one franchise, it's apparent that he'd rather stick things out in Denver than begin from the ground up. 

Related

    Report: Nets Signing Iman Shumpert

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Report: Nets Signing Iman Shumpert

    Adam Wells
    via Bleacher Report

    Report: Magic Eyeing DeMar DeRozan

    Orlando is 'scouring' the trade market and has already expressed interest in trading for DeRozan

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Report: Magic Eyeing DeMar DeRozan

    Tim Daniels
    via Bleacher Report

    LeBron: AD Shows 'Grit' Playing Through Pain

    NBA logo
    NBA

    LeBron: AD Shows 'Grit' Playing Through Pain

    Mike Chiari
    via Bleacher Report

    Report: AD (Ribs) Not Expected to Play vs. Warriors

    Lakers expected to sit AD on second night of back-to-back

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Report: AD (Ribs) Not Expected to Play vs. Warriors

    Joseph Zucker
    via Bleacher Report