While the unofficial announcement that the Washington Wizards have hired Michael Winger as their President of Basketball Operations last night mostly flew under the radar, the Wizards have finally issued an official media release today at 2 p.m. announcing the hire, as well as indicating clearly that the Wizards will shift their operating model to the one used by the Clippers: separating the roles of President of Basketball Operations and GM:
Winger and Leonsis will immediately begin a search for a lead executive for the Wizards.
Previously, Tommy Sheppard held both positions (famously, or infamously, he was promoted from being solely the GM to being both GM and PBO following the Wizards (short-lived) hot start to the 2021-2022 season).
The Clippers, on the other hand, have operated a two-tiered system where Lawrence Frank serves as President of the L.A. Clippers and Michael Winger, until yesterday, was the GM.
According to Robert Flom of 213hoops.com Michael Winger was known for negotiation and salary cap knowledge. Winger’s assistant GMs at the Clippers were Trent Redden and Mark Hughes. Redden reportedly is more of a talent evaluator type and Hughes came up from coaching and player personnel.
It wouldn’t be surprising if Winger brings in either of these for the GM position. Redden and Winger go all the way back to their Cavaliers tenure.