Demps went straight to work after being hired as Hornets GM (Photo by AP).
Former Austin Toros GM Dell Demps Takes Over in New Orleans
New Orleans, La. (Tuesday, July 27, 2010) – Anyone who follows the NBA knows about recent talks between the team and superstar point guard Chris Paul. After news recently leaked that Paul was apparently seeking a trade, the two sides appear to have made a truce, which is quite an impressive accomplishment for the City of New Orleans and Hornets general manager Dell Demps.
“I was encouraged,” Demps said today of the closed-door conversation with Paul. “It was the first time I'd met Chris. It was a good opportunity for us to open the lines of communication. Chris had some very good points. He's a smart, young, intelligent person, and I was really excited about the meeting. He did not request a trade."
Demps spoke with the savvy of a veteran NBA general manager, but what many may not know is that this is his first week on the job. Last Wednesday, the Hornets formally announced Demps as its new front office leader after his predecessor Jeff Bower stepped down earlier this month. Prior to accepting his new post, Demps spent the past five seasons with the San Antonio Spurs as its Director of Pro Player Personnel. In addition to those responsibilities, he also served for three years as the general manager of the Spurs NBA D-League affiliate club, the Austin Toros, making him the first D-League alumnus to become general manager of an NBA franchise.
“Through our extensive research with a number of GM candidates, Dell shined through as a rising star from a program in San Antonio that has a tremendous history of building a franchise into a championship contender,” Hornets President Hugh Weber said of Demps. "Beginning with the hiring of head coach Monty Williams, we’ve begun a path of building our basketball operations with people we feel are going to be the best in the business, and Dell Demps certainly fits into that category.”
Demps was equally as excited to take over at his new gig.
“From the moment I spoke to Hugh and Monty about this opportunity, I could tell something special was building within the organization,” he stated. “I am excited for this opportunity because the Hornets are a great organization with a lot of positive pieces.”
As a player, Demps was a four-year starter at the University of the Pacific before enjoying a 10-year professional career in the NBA and overseas. His first post-playing career job was as an assistant coach for the Mobile Revelers, a team he helped to the 2003 D-League title. He then spent two seasons with the New York Knicks before joining the Spurs organization.