3/7 UPDATE: The Lakers officially announced Pelinka as the team’s new general manager on Tuesday afternoon.
Pelinka, 47, joins the Lakers after spending the greater part of two decades representing many of the NBA’s top talent. During his tenure as an agent, Pelinka was named by Forbes Magazine as one of the Top 10 Sports Agents in the World. In his role, Pelinka will report to Lakers Governor Jeanie Buss and President of Basketball Operations, Earvin “Magic” Johnson.
“We have worked closely with Rob for many years and have first-hand experience with his knowledge of the league and the business of basketball,” said Buss. “In our recent discussions, it was clear that he also shares our goal of returning the Lakers to being an elite NBA franchise. Together with Earvin and Coach Walton, I believe we are in a great position to bring winning basketball back to the Lakers.”
The Lakers will introduce Pelinka at a press conference at 1 P.M. on Friday.
In the aftermath of the firing of Mitch Kupchak and Jim Buss, the Lakers have begun their search for a new general manager. Considering the shocking timing of their dismissal, the team may have to work quickly being that the trade deadline is this Thursday. The Lakers have already been linked to a short list of GM candidates. But one name is ahead of the pack.
Agent Rob Pelinka has emerged as a front-runner to become Lakers GM under Magic Johnson, sources tell @TheVertical. Reps Harden, Kobe.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) February 21, 2017
Nothing concrete, but I’m hearing strong indications Rob Pelinka, Kobe’s longtime agent, will be the Lakers’ next general manager.
— KEVIN DING (@KevinDing) February 21, 2017
Sports agent Rob Pelinka seems to be the popular candidate, having been linked to the Lakers by the above Wojnarowski and Ding, as well as Ramona Shelburne and Marc Stein. Pelinka already has a link to the Lakers in Kobe Bryant, whom Magic also wants on board in some capacity.
Pelinka has no front office history, like his potential boss Magic Johnson. Wojnarowski also mentioned that Pelinka would have to remove himself from the representation business, which would prevent a hiring from happening immediately.
Jerry West will not be in the Lakers’ new regime, according to the B/R’s Ding. His son, Ryan, on the other hand, will see an increased role with the organization.