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Volume 24 No. 156
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NBA Franchise Notes: 76ers Issues Deeper Than New Coach?

In Philadelphia, Bob Ford wrote of the 76ers, "Forget who will coach the team. Who will run the team?" 76ers President Rod Thorn is "easing into retirement," and GM Tony DiLeo, who has been "a loyal, competent company man for years and got the GM title last year when the team couldn't find anyone else, doesn't seem to fit the job that must be done." 76ers Majority Owner Josh Harris "needs to find a sharp, aggressive NBA architect" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 4/21). Also in Philadelphia, John Smallwood wrote the franchise is "at its lowest point since it passed Anferenee Hardaway and Jamal Mashburn in the 1993 draft to take Shawn Bradley." This franchise is "as close to ground zero since the 1995-96 season -- the one before it drafted Allen Iverson with the No. 1 overall pick." The team's trade for C Andrew Bynum last August has "cost them their coach, the trust of their fans, their dignity, and, most important, their hope for turning things around anytime soon" (PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS, 4/20).

: In Detroit, Bob Wojnowski wrote of Pistons President of Basketball Operations Joe Dumars, "I've always maintained Dumars could turn this around, even after owner Bill Davidson passed away and the franchise entered a two-year limbo. I have doubts now. For the sake of basketball in this area, I hope Dumars proves us wrong." But Wojnowski wrote he is "not sure" Pistons Owner Tom Gores "has total faith" in Dumars (DETROIT NEWS, 4/19). Also in Detroit, Terry Foster writes the phrase, "spend it and they shall come" does not "apply to the Pistons." Gores can "make all the proclamations he wants, the problem is the Pistons are not a free-agent destination." Foster: "Gores has money to burn. But will anybody of worth take it?" (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 4/22).

OF TEAL & PURPLE: In Charlotte, Rick Bonnell wrote fans have been asking him "why the NBA would need 18 months to rebrand the Bobcats," as NBA Deputy Commissioner & COO Adam Silver said last week. Branding experts said that they "find 18 months an incredibly tight schedule to do all the things involved in such a project" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 4/21).