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Tommy Sheppard will probably run the Wizards’ basketball operations for awhile

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At this point, we should just assume that Tommy Sheppard is the Wizards’ front office basketball operations go-to man until further notice.

Washington Wizards v Toronto Raptors - Game Two
It doesn’t appear that the Wizards are making any significant moves for a few weeks. So Tommy Sheppard could get a chance to truly make an impact on the team.
Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images

The Wizards’ search for a new President of Basketball Operations doesn’t seem like it will end anytime soon. Sure, Masai Ujiri is a dream candidate of sorts, but if Ted Leonsis is targeting him, Ujiri may have a more general role with Monumental Sports & Entertainment instead.

So let’s talk about Tommy Sheppard, the Wizards’ Senior Vice President of Basketball Operations. He has the interim President tag now, but what if he already has the go-ahead to do what he feels is right for the NBA Draft, free agency and more without the title of President? After all, the Lakers did not promote Rob Pelinka, yet he has all the duties of running basketball operations like Magic Johnson did.

Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington wrote a piece on the front office search on Monday which hammered home two points. First, the apparent lack of urgency to hire an outside replacement for Grunfeld implies that Sheppard may have Ted Leonsis’ confidence and assurance to run the NBA Draft and free agency, both of which happen within the next month.

The Wizards have to decide by June 29 whether to pick up ream options and NBA free agency starts on June 30 at 6 p.m. ET. And the NBA’s Vegas Summer League starts on July 5 to July 15.

It’s one thing to look for the right person to fill the job. But sometimes, the right fit for the job can come in at a hectic time. Common sentiment may dictate that the next front office leader should come in before the Draft, but we also know things will be a bit tight at this point.

I certainly get why a team should have a new front office leader before the Draft and Free Agency. But it appears that Ted is making the case that the best fit for this job can come in at any time. After all, a new President of Basketball Operation should be there for the long haul.

In the meantime, Tommy Sheppard is the Wizards’ general manager and more until further notice.