The Charlotte Hornets, in a move that caught most NBA observers off guard will name former Portland Trail Blazers General Manager Rich Cho Tuesday as the team’s new G.M. according to a report published by the “Charlotte Observer” Tuesday morning. Cho who was fired less than a month ago by the Blazers will replace Rod Higgins who becomes the Bobcats President Of Basketball Operations. Portland dismissed Cho in late May after he held the General Manager position for less than a year saying he was not the right fit for the franchise.
Higgins told the paper that the perspective Cho has will make him a strong addition to the team from Charlotte. He said “He has a unique set of skills that I don’t possess. His analytical mind is a big plus for us. His legal background is a big plus for us. I’m a traditional basketball guy, and Rich is a very untraditional addition to our operation here. With the value Rich has around the league, we put the pedal to the metal to hire him. There’s huge value in getting this done prior to this draft.”
The Bobcats have three selections in the upcoming NBA Draft that will take place on June 23, as they hold the ninth pick as well as number 19 in the first round and will also pick again with number 39 in the Draft’s second round. They acquired the 19th pick in a trade with Portland that sent Gerald Wallace to the Blazers before the Association’s trade deadline in February.
Higgins rapport with Cho when making the deal that sent Wallace to Portland was a factor in the team making the hiring. Higgins told the paper “We want cohesion in our strategy going forward. All the conversations I have (with other teams) are probably not as cordial and upfront as the ones we had. With Rich, what you see on the surface is who he really is. I think I’m that way, too.”
Cho told the paper he will concentrate on filling two of the club’s needs in the upcoming draft. He said “I think we need some shooting and another big man.”