Magic hire Bucks' John Hammond as new GM

Posted May 28, 2017

Hammond's contract with the Bucks was through the 2017-18 season, but the team a year ago hired Justin Zanik as assistant GM and eventual - though perhaps sooner-than-expected - successor to Hammond.

Weltman came to Milwaukee following one year as director of basketball administration in Detroit and five seasons as assistant general manager with the Denver Nuggets (2001-06). With the growing demand on basketball operations, a new organizational structure and greater investment was needed. Not only have the Magic not been back to the playoffs, but they haven't even won more than 35 games since. We wish John and his family nothing but the best in Orlando.

Magic president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman, whose hire was announced Tuesday morning, worked under Hammond as an assistant general manager with the Bucks from 2008-13.

It is not clear if interim General Manager Matt Lloyd will remain as the general manager. Orlando owns the sixth pick in next month's NBA Draft and has about $14 million to spend in free agency in July. The five-year deal he was given seems to indicate that Orlando understands that this will be a process that takes significant time, given what they now have on the roster. During his last season in Los Angeles (2000-01), the Clippers improved their win total by 16 - the biggest turnaround in the league.

The former Toronto general manager is a veteran NBA executive but relatively unknown to the casual basketball fan.

Toronto has set a number of franchise records over the past few seasons and made the Eastern Conference final for the first time last May.

Unsurprisingly, Wojnarowski reports that Hammond's departure triggers Zanik's promotion to the top job in Milwaukee.

His late father, Harry Weltman, served as GM of the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Spirits of St. Louis of the American Basketball Association.