Report: NBA’s Executive of Year prepared to leave Nuggets for Raptors
The NBA’s Executive of the Year, Masai Ujiri, is prepared to leave the Nuggets to rebuild the Raptors, according to Yahoo! Sports.
The Nuggets have given the Raptors permission to interview Ujiri, and a meeting is expected to take place within the next 24 hours, according to a source.
Ujiri’s three-year transformation of the Nuggets has included trading Carmelo Anthony, while adding Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler, Kosta Koufos and Timofey Mozgov.
From Yahoo! Sports:
Denver has long been reluctant to pay its top front-office executives market value, and current contract extension talks with Ujiri are believed to include figures that are nowhere near the commitment that Toronto’s willing to make.
Ujiri’s contract with the Nuggets expires on June 30 and it’s possible an agreement can be struck that will allow him to leave sooner.
Ujiri is one of the NBA’s lowest-paid general managers, making below $1 million a year.
Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment CEO Tim Leiweke is aggressively pursuing Ujiri to become the Raptors’ general manager and plans to present an offer that will pay him nearly $3 million annually over the course of a multiyear contract, league sources said.
Ujiri, a native of Nigeria, worked as the Raptors’ assistant GM before taking the Nuggets job and is considered a mentor of Raptors president Bryan Colangelo who was reassigned to the franchise’s business side.