CLEVELAND (AP) — Chauncey Billups spun away from the Cavaliers.
After discussing a lead role in Cleveland’s front office, Billups withdrew from consideration on Monday.
The former All-Star guard had been in discussions with Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert about joining the reigning Eastern Conference champions, but the 40-year-old said “that the timing just isn’t right.”
The Cavs have been looking for a general manager since David Griffin parted ways with the club just before the draft. Griffin helped guide Cleveland to three straight Finals appearances but could not resolve issues with Gilbert, who has yet to give any of the four GMs who have worked for him since 2005 a contract extension.
Billups does not have any front-office experience, but his solid reputation attracted him to Gilbert, who has known him since he played for the Detroit Pistons. It is believed Gilbert asked Billups to be the club’s president of basketball operations.
Billups released a statement to ESPN on his decision. He’s an analyst for the network.
“I have great respect for Dan Gilbert and the Cleveland Cavaliers, and I greatly appreciate the discussions we had regarding their organization,” Billups said. “As I have conveyed before, ultimately I would like to lead a team’s basketball operation and be a part of a successful franchise. But presently, the timing just isn’t right to delve into that role in Cleveland. In the meantime, I will continue to focus on broadcasting and my other business endeavors.”
Billups, who has strong roots in Denver, previously interviewed for Atlanta’s GM opening.
Cavaliers assistant GM Koby Altman is leading Cleveland’s front office during free agency, and it’s possible he will assume the role full-time.
Gilbert has not publicly commented since the end of the season.
The Cavaliers have agreed to terms with shooting specialist Kyle Korver and veteran guard Jose Calderon since the free-agency negotiating period opened Saturday.
By TOM WITHERS, AP Sports Writer
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