At least in part, the circumstances causing former Minnesota president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas to shockingly lose his job just before training camp may have traced back to an overture from the Rockets for one of Rosas’ top lieutenants with the Timberwolves.
According to Jon Krawczynski and Shams Charania of The Athletic, executive vice president of basketball operations Sachin Gupta was poised to make a lateral move (in status) to Houston due to a pay increase. However, Rosas blocked Gupta from making the move.
Rosas, Gupta, and current Rockets general manager Rafael Stone all worked together for years in Houston under former general manager Daryl Morey, who now runs basketball operations in Philadelphia. Thus, Rosas and Stone each have a relationship with Gupta, and it appears that Gupta was ready to go back to Houston for financial reasons.
However, Rosas contends that the timing of the desired move was unacceptable because it came just prior to the July 29 NBA draft, and the Timberwolves could have been damaged by allowing someone with proprietary information go to a direct competitor. As it pertains to the Rockets, here are some key details from The Athletic’s story:
Some issues were exacerbated this summer when Rosas and Gupta butted heads over Rosas’ decision to block Gupta from making a lateral move to the Rockets with increased pay, sources said. Rosas said the timing of the request, coming right before the draft and free agency, made it impossible for the Timberwolves to let someone with as much proprietary knowledge of the team’s plans go to a competitor.
The tension between them only grew later in August when Rosas banished Gupta from the team’s offices and granted him permission to seek employment elsewhere, according to sources. The issue was resolved in early September after ownership got involved and Gupta decided to stay.
[Rosas] said most teams would have denied Gupta permission in that scenario because it was not a promotion and said he fought hard earlier in his tenure for Gupta to get the Sacramento GM job. He also granted Gupta permission to seek other opportunities after free agency concluded.
Rosas was relieved of his duties Wednesday over what some within the organization referred to as a “dysfunctional” environment, according to The Athletic, and Gupta is now the interim replacement at the head of Minnesota’s basketball operations department. Outgoing owner Glen Taylor became involved in the evaluation during recent weeks after complaints by a vocal contingent of staffers, The Athletic reports.
Ultimately, it appears that Gupta — now the first person of Indian origin to head an NBA team’s basketball operations — will also receive serious consideration for the permanent position. Thus, for the time being, he has higher ambitions than reconsidering a move to the Rockets to work for Stone. However, depending on the outcome of Minnesota’s search, it’s a conversation that could be revisited at a later date.
Daryl Morey takes out full-page newspaper ad to thank Rockets, fans
Rockets advisor Sachin Gupta takes assistant GM job in Detroit
Sucks that it didn’t work out, but kudos to Tilman for being willing to pay
— Ben DuBose (@BenDuBose) September 23, 2021
Potential decisions for Stephen Silas, Rafael Stone at Rockets training camp
Source: Yahoo Sports