Cavaliers Announce Basketball Operations Hires and Promotions
CLEVELAND, OH - September 21, 2010 - The Cleveland Cavaliers have named David Griffin as Vice President of Basketball Operations, Michael Blackstone as Executive Director of Basketball Operations, Derek Millender as Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach and Physical Training Coordinator for Player Development, Stephen Spiro as Assistant Athletic Trainer and Kwame Graves-Fulgham as Video Coordinator, Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts. Additionally, Grant announced the promotions of David Henderson to Director of East Coast Scouting, Wes Wilcox to Director of Player Personnel, Trent Redden to Basketball Operations Manager/Scout, Dan Vincent to Assistant Video Coordinator/Advance Scout Manager and Larisha Whatley to Player Programs and Team Services Manager.
“We are extremely proud to promote and advance the careers of the high-quality people already within our organization. These individuals have helped us develop our strong foundation,” said Cavs General Manager Chris Grant. “At the same time, we are pleased to have built an organization and a culture that attracts talented, successful, hard-working individuals.”
Griffin joins the Cavaliers following a 17-season stint with the Phoenix Suns, where he most recently served as the Senior Vice President of Basketball Operations. With the Cavs, Griffin will work closely with General Manager Chris Grant on all basketball and front office matters and oversee the team’s scouting and player personnel areas as well as the team’s draft process. Prior to his final position with Phoenix, Griffin also held the roles of assistant general manager of player personnel, director of player personnel, assistant director of player personnel, basketball operations assistant and media relations coordinator with the Suns following his start as an intern in the media relations department in 1993.
Blackstone comes to Cleveland from the Shapiro Negotiations Institute (SNI), in Baltimore, MD. As the Vice President of Marketing/Master Facilitator at SNI, Blackstone consulted and advised partner companies, including Sunoco, Wachovia, Bank of America, TV Guide and the Cleveland Indians of MLB, on high-level negotiations.
Millender will remain in Cleveland, joining the Cavaliers from local Cleveland State University (CSU). As the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach for four seasons at CSU, he was responsible for the strength and conditioning programs for nearly 300 student-athletes in 17 intercollegiate sports. Prior to that, he served as the assistant strength and conditioning coach for the Cleveland Indians and their Class A and Double-A teams.
Spiro spent six years with Temple University as the men’s basketball head athletic trainer. In addition to his basketball experience, he also served as the Boston Red Sox Triple-A team’s assistant athletic trainer for a season prior to joining Temple.
Graves-Fulgham joins the team from the Boston Celtics. He played an instrumental role the past two seasons in Boston as the assistant video coordinator assisting the head video coordinator in performing video breakdowns of upcoming opponents and assembling personnel reports to coaches and players among other duties.
Henderson joined the Cavs prior to the 2007-08 season as a scout. He starred as a player at Duke, reaching the Final Four as a senior in 1986 before playing one season in the NBA with the Philadelphia 76ers and eight seasons overseas in Israel and Turkey. Following his playing career, Henderson spent four seasons at Duke as an assistant coach before being named head coach at the University of Delaware in 2000.
Wes Wilcox started with the Cavaliers prior to the 2003-04 season and for the past three seasons has served as the team’s Pro/College Scout. He has played a key role in the Cavaliers personnel scouting process focusing on the minor leagues, NCAA, NBA and numerous international leagues. He has also held the role of advance scout with the team.
Redden began his NBA career with the Cavaliers as the basketball operations intern in July of 2006. He was hired immediately following the 2006-07 season as the basketball operations assistant and over the past three seasons has aided in all areas of the Cavaliers basketball operations team.
Vincent also began his career in Cleveland as an intern, joining the Cavs as a team seasonal assistant prior to the 2007-08 season. Following the completion of the season, he was brought on as the coaching staff coordinator, working closely with the head coach and assistant coaches in all areas of game preparation.
Larisha Whatley started in Cleveland in 2004 as public relations coordinator before joining the basketball operations as the team services coordinator. Prior to joining the Cavs, she spent four years in Detroit as a media relations coordinator for the Detroit Pistons and assistant director of media relations for the Detroit Shock.