The Clippers just lost a key member of their front office, as Adrian Wojnarowksi of ESPN broke the news that Clippers General Manager Michael Winger will take the Wizards’ job as President of Monumental Basketball, giving him oversight over the WNBA Mystics and G-League Go-Go as well.
Winger has been with the Clippers since 2017 as the GM, or the number two front office executive on the basketball operations side behind Lawrence Frank. He came from the Thunder, where he had been since 2010, and before that was an exec with the Cavs from 2005 to 2010.
The Clippers have two Assistant GMs, Trent Redden and Mark Hughes, who have been with the organization for several years and who are natural successors to Winger in that number two slot. While Winger was known for negotiation and salary cap knowledge, Redden is more of a talent evaluator type and Hughes came up from coaching and player personnel.
There is also the possibility that the Clippers bring in an outside hire. Bob Myers has been linked to the Clippers, and by all accounts his time in Golden State could be coming to an end. However, he would be taking Frank’s job, not Winger’s, and it’s hard to imagine the Clippers moving on from both of their top bball ops execs in one summer.
Good for Winger, who has been around a long time and put in his dues, and now gets to take over the head slot for a team that has big, big decisions to make this summer. Could Winger be a natural trade partner with his former team in dishing out some of the Wizards’ veterans if they decide to tank, including one Bradley Beal (heck, I’d love Monte Morris)… maybe.
Hopefully the Clippers’ brain trust doesn’t take any more hits outside of losing Winger, as the Clippers have big decisions of their own this summer and it will be all hands on deck.