Michael Jordan still has a say in how Charlotte Hornets operate and who is hired and fired, following the appointment of manager Mitch Kupchak
Jordan has hired the experienced Kupchak this off-season to help turn around a franchise mired in mediocrity since he became the Charlotte Hornets‘ majority share holder eight years ago.
However, that doesn’t mean the highly competitive Jordan won’t have an input on personnel decisions, beginning with the National Basketball Association draft on Thursday night.
Speaking in a pre-draft news conference Tuesday, Kupchak said he’ll have final say in who the Hornets select before quickly adding, ”well, with the exception of one person – and obviously that’s ownership.”
Having won 10 NBA championships including seven as an executive with the Los Angeles Lakers, the new manager knows a thing or two about building a winning roster.
However, he’s quickly learning that Jordan, who many consider the best NBA player ever, is still very much a hands-on owner when it comes to the players he employs.
”There is a huge business component to our relationship,” Kupchak said.
”Hopefully when all is said and done, our other relationship, which is our friend relationship continues to grow and is not altered in any way.
“There are no favours being done here. We’re friends and I think we’ll remain friends, but the bottom line in this business is success and winning games.”
Kupchak said he has communicated with Jordan on the phone and via text throughout the draft evaluation process with the 55-year-old Jordan arriving in Charlotte on Monday where the two have been studying tape on potential draft picks since.
The Hornets, who have failed to make the playoffs three of the past four seasons, have the 11th overall pick in the draft.