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Report: Robert Sarver ‘focused’ on hiring Jeff Bower to front office role

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

It appears Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver has reportedly pinpointed his next hire.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Sarver is “focusing” in on former Detroit and New Orleans GM Jeff Bower to assume a “high-ranking front-office role” with the team.

Wojnarowski adds that the owner has already begun to let other serious candidates know that he’s going in a different direction, and that a hire could even be completed by early next week.

In addition to Bower reportedly being targeted by Phoenix, Sarver has also discussed interim GM James Jones continuing with the team “in a lead front office capacity with decision-making power.”

According to Woj, Jones and Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald have sat in on interviews.

Bower has spent 11 seasons in the NBA as a GM for Charlotte, New Orleans and Detroit.

With the then-New Orleans Hornets, Bower was credited with drafting point guard Chris Paul in the 2005 NBA Draft, while also getting the Hornets out of the lottery and into the playoffs. In 2009, Bower was named head coach of the team following the firing of Byron Scott. He stepped down at the conclusion of the season, returning back to his GM position.

In 2013, Bower stepped away from the NBA scene, taking over as the men’s basketball head coach at Marist College.

The following year, Bower returned to the NBA as Detroit’s GM. The Pistons reached the playoffs in his second season with the team, with Bower signing an extension in 2016. Again, Bower helped bring another team out of the lottery and into the postseason. The general manager was eventually fired in 2018.

While Bower has seen a lot of time in the league, he has not been linked as a reported general manager candidate for the Suns.

According to 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s John Gambadoro, current co-interim Suns GMs James Jones and Trevor Bukstein are in the mix for the job, while The New York Times’ Marc Stein reported in March that both Kevin McHale and Jim Paxson were also being considered.

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