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Charlotte Hornets will not extend GM Rich Cho's contract

From NBA media reports

Changes are in store for the Charlotte Hornets’ front office.

The team announced today that general manager Rich Cho will not have his contract extended and will begin an immediate search for a new GM.

“I want to thank Rich for all of his hard work with the Charlotte Hornets organization through the years and wish him and his family the best in the future,” said Hornets chairman Michael Jordan said in a statement released by the team.

“Rich worked tirelessly on behalf of our team and instituted a number of management tools that have benefited our organization. We are deeply committed to our fans and to the city of Charlotte to provide a consistent winner on the court. The search will now begin for our next head of basketball operations who will help us achieve that goal.”

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Hornets are expected to pursue former Los Angeles Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak for a front-office role:

Hornets owner Michael Jordan is expected to pursue former Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak to partner in the front office with assistant GM Buzz Peterson, essentially replacing Cho, league sources said.

Cho has served as Hornets GM since June of 2011 after serving as the Portland Trail Blazers’ GM in 2010-11. He became the first Asian-American general manager in American major league sports when the Blazers named him to that post in 2010-11. Prior to his stint in Portland, Cho spent the previous 10 seasons as assistant GM of the Seattle SuperSonics/Oklahoma City Thunder.

Under Cho, the Hornets had their share of successes, including drafting All-Star guard Kemba Walker in 2011, the hiring of coach Steve Clifford in 2013 and playoff appearances in 2014 and ’16.

However, the Hornets have struggled to consistently remain in the Eastern Conference playoff picture the last few seasons. They are 24-33 this season and 5 1/2 games out of the chase for the East’s No. 8 seed.