Rod Thorn Joins Bucks as Special Consultant
Highly regarded executive brings more than 50 years of NBA experience to organization
The Milwaukee Bucks have hired long-time NBA executive Rod Thorn as a special consultant, the team announced Monday morning in advance of its annual Media Day. Thorn most recently served as the NBA’s president of basketball operations, where he oversaw the league’s daily operations under commissioner Adam Silver.
“Rod Thorn is an extremely respected and accomplished NBA executive at both the league and team levels,” Bucks owner Wes Edens said. “He will serve as a terrific resource to our ownership group, as well as John and Jason, as we build our organization into a championship contender. We’re thrilled to add a person of his caliber, with his basketball knowledge and expertise, to the Bucks family.”
Thorn had three stops as an NBA general manager – with the Chicago Bulls, New Jersey Nets and Philadelphia 76ers. He is responsible for drafting Michael Jordan to the Chicago Bulls with the third overall pick in the 1984 NBA draft. He also traded for Jason Kidd and was the NBA’s Executive of the Year in 2001-02 for orchestrating the Nets’ dramatic turnaround that led to consecutive trips to the NBA Finals (2002, 2003).
“The Bucks have a young, talented team with huge potential and are in the process of building a world-class organization,” said Thorn. “I’m very pleased to work with a visionary ownership group, a terrific young coach in Jason Kidd and an outstanding and well-respected general manager in John Hammond. This is a great time to join the Bucks family, and I’m very excited to be part of it.”
Prior to joining the Nets in 2000, Thorn had run the league’s basketball operations under former commissioner David Stern for 14 years.
“Rod’s knowledge of the NBA is unparalleled,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said. “He's done it all throughout his more than 50 years in the league, and I’m thrilled for both him and the Bucks that he will be joining their organization.”
The Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame honored Thorn with its John Bunn Lifetime Achievement Award this year. Given to an international or national figure who has contributed greatly to the game of basketball, it’s the Hall’s most prestigious award outside of induction.
“I’ve had the pleasure to know and work with Rod throughout my entire NBA career,” General Manager John Hammond said. “Rod is one of the best in our business, and I’m looking forward to working with him as we continue to build toward a championship.”
Thorn was an All-American at West Virginia, and the No. 2 overall pick in the 1963 NBA Draft by the Baltimore Bullets. He enjoyed an eight-year playing career with Baltimore, the Detroit Pistons, the St. Louis Hawks and Seattle SuperSonics. He had two head coaching stints with the ABA’s St. Louis Spirit and the Chicago Bulls before moving full time into basketball administration.