The Detroit Pistons have hired Memphis Grizzlies vice president of player personnel Ed Stefanski to rebuild the team's front office in the wake of Stan Van Gundy's dismissal, Stefanski told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.
Stefanski will orchestrate the Pistons' search for a new general manager and head coach, and he reportedly already has a candidate in mind for the latter position. Former Toronto Raptors bench boss Dwane Casey has emerged as the "primary target" of Detroit's coaching search, sources told Wojnarowski.
Stefanski will receive a three-year deal and assume an "advisory role" in which he will report directly to Pistons owner Tom Gores, sources told Vincent Ellis of the Detroit Free Press. The position sounds vaguely similar to the one Jerry West has taken up with the Los Angeles Clippers.
"I'm going to Detroit to meet with all the employees, and I am going to listen to all their thoughts and visions," Stefanski told Wojnarowski. "And then I am going to give advice to our owner, Tom Gores, on how we are going to structure things going forward. The big thing right now, though, is that we need a head coach and a GM. Those will be two items that we will probably do simultaneously."
Casey, the winningest coach in Raptors history, was let go by the organization two weeks ago after enduring a playoff sweep at the hands of the Cleveland Cavaliers for a second straight year. He compiled a 373-307 record across seven seasons, overseeing the franchise's five most successful regular seasons, four of its five playoff series victories, and its only conference finals berth.
Stefanski has ties to Casey from his time in Toronto, where he served as the Raptors' VP of basketball operations from 2011-13 (the first two years of Casey's tenure). Before that, Stefanski served as the GM of the New Jersey Nets (2004-07) and Philadelphia 76ers (2007-10). His most notable move as an executive came during his first season with the Nets, when he fleeced the Raptors in a lopsided trade for Vince Carter.