Suns reportedly hiring Pistons executive Josh Bartelstein as CEO

Mar 4, 2023, 4:20 PM | Updated: 4:34 pm
General view of action as Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks moves the ball up court during th...
General view of action as Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks moves the ball up court during the second half of the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at Footprint Center on October 19, 2022 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The Phoenix Suns are hiring Detroit Pistons executive Josh Bartelstein as their new CEO, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Saturday.

New owner Mat Ishbia reportedly targeted Bartelstein to aid in the overhaul of the Robert Sarver-led culture that was previously in place. General manager James Jones will still report directly to Ishbia, Wojnarowski added.

Bartelstein, 33, became the assistant general manager in Detroit in July 2022, according to his LinkedIn page. He previously spent two years as the Pistons’ VP of business and basketball operations and nearly five years as an executive under Palace Sports and Entertainment vice chairman Arn Tellem.

He was vital in many different projects with the team and city, including relocating the Pistons to downtown Detroit, Wojnarowski said.

Bartelstein will replace former CEO Jason Rowley, who was also reportedly involved in different workplace misconduct allegations. Rowley resigned from his position in early February. He had been the Suns’ president and CEO since 2012.

The new CEO played basketball for Ishbia’s rival school, Michigan, from 2009-13 and was also a walk-on like the Suns’ owner at Michigan State. Bartelstein was a captain on the 2012-13 team that helped Michigan reach its first Final Four in 20 years.

Wojnarowski added that Bartelstein is the son of Mark Bartelstein, one of the league’s most prominent player representatives and the CEO of Priority Sports and Entertainment based in Chicago.

Bartelstein is from Highland Park, Ill.

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