Colangelo Named 2006-07 NBA Executive Of The Year

In his first full season at the helm of the Raptors, Colangelo rebuilt the roster retaining just six players from the 2005-06 15-man unit. He made three trades, acquiring guard T.J. Ford from Milwaukee, forward Kris Humphries from Utah and centre Rasho Nesterovic from San Antonio, and signed free-agent starters forward Jorge Garbajosa and guard-forward Anthony Parker. He also resigned NBA All-Star Chris Bosh to a long term deal.

Colangelo’s revamping of the roster began to take shape when the Raptors won the annual NBA Draft Lottery, giving the franchise the top overall pick for the first time in team history. He made NBA history by taking Benetton Treviso forward Andrea Bargnani with the selection, marking the first time a European player had been tabbed with the top pick.

The Raptors improved by 20 wins over the 2005-06 season to tie a franchise high with 47 victories. They also captured their first divisional title winning the Atlantic and returned to the postseason after a five year absence gaining home court for the first time in franchise history.

Colangelo also won this award in 2004-05 while serving as the president and general manager of the Phoenix Suns. He revamped a Suns team that finished with a league-best 62-20 mark after posting a 29-53 record in 2003-04. This is the fifth executive of the year honour garnered by the current Raptors basketball operations management. Senior Basketball Advisor Wayne Embry captured The Sporting News award in 1992 and 1998 and Executive Vice President and Assistant General Manager Maurizio Gherardini was named Italy’s Legabasket Executive of the Year in 2006. In addition, this is the sixth time The Sporting News Executive of the Year award has been won by the Colangelo family. Jerry Colangelo, Bryan’s father, earned the award an unequaled four times with the Phoenix Suns (1976, 1981, 1989 and 1993). Bryan joins Bob Bass (San Antonio in 1990 and Charlotte in 1997) and Jerry West (Los Angeles Lakers in 1995 and Memphis Grizzlies in 2004) as the only multiple winners with different franchises.

Colangelo received 29 of the 45 votes cast by his fellow executives. Houston’s Carroll Dawson finished second with nine votes while seven other executives received votes for the award.