Analysis, News

Brooklyn Nets News: Who Is Sean Marks?

After about six weeks of not having a General Manager (don’t be fooled, I still think Billy King was the GM) and having the franchise out in the ocean with no boat, the Brooklyn Nets buckled down, got some act right, and hired Sean Marks as their new GM.

You mean, Mikhail Prokhorov DOES know who Sean Marks is?

“After an exhaustive vetting process, we are delighted to have Sean our General Manager,” Mikhail Prokhorov said. ” His experience on the court, in coaching and management gives him a 360 degree view of the job at hand. His background helping to build one of the greatest teams in the NBA gives him an un paralleled frame of reference. And he impressed us all with his vision, his values, his personality and his enthusiasm for the club. The vote to select him from an incredible list of talent was unanimous. We welcome Sean into our Nets family and look forward to his strong leadership and independent thinking as we build our own success story.”

That means finally… finally… FINALLY! After all this time, the Brooklyn Nets…


Now the question is…

Who is this Sean Marks guy, who now has the keys to the Nets franchise going forward?

Here’s the resume…

Sean Marks was one of the last reported candidates that joined the GM list. It was reported that he was on the Brooklyn Nets’ radar less than a couple of weeks ago.

Here’s what I wrote at the time:

Sean Marks currently worked as the Assistant General Manager of the San Antonio Spurs. Marks played the journeyman role for 12 years in the NBA and has a background in international basketball, playing for New Zealand in the 2000 and 2004 Olympics.

He joined the San Antonio Spurs in 2012 and is considered a valuable asset in the organization. In the last three years with the Spurs, Marks has taken full advantage of the commitment to excellence that is the San Antonio Spurs. Marks has climbed the ladder first as a basketball operations assistant, then he became the director of basketball operations before becoming an assistant coach to Gregg Popovich. He helped bring home a championship over the LeBron James-led Miami Heat before becoming the Assistant GM last season. Marks also headed up the San Antonio D-League affiliate, the Austin Spurs, which looked very well on a resume for the Nets, who are set to launch their own D-League team, the Long Island Nets.

What put him in the final three after only a couple of weeks, you ask? Sergey Kushencko, a member of the Nets search committee, is personal friends with R.C. Buford, the Spurs’ GM. The way I see it, if you can’t get a hold of the best, have the best point you in the right direction. Sean Marks has to be the real deal, if one of the mainstays of the Spurs dynasty has a good word for him. Period.

Adrian Wojnarowski of the Vertical reports the deal is for four years.

“The Nets and Marks agreed to a four year contract, league sources told The Vertical.

In discussions that extended to Wednesday night, the Nets significantly increased their contract offer to persuade Marks to accept the job, league sources said.

Marks, 40, had emerged as the Nets top choice through a two month process”

Sean Marks expressed his feelings at the press conference…

“I am very excited to be named the General Manager of the Brooklyn Nets, and to become a member of the vibrant and dynamic organization that represents Brooklyn,” Marks said. “I would like to thank the Nets’ ownership for giving me this opportunity, and I look forward to the challenge of creating a unified culture and building a winning team.”

That’s so sweet, isn’t it? Feels like my first day at Brooklyn’s Finest.

Let’s deal with the real here.

The reason why Sean Marks was hired by the Brooklyn Nets is the reason why they almost lost him…

Sean Marks is not stupid.

According to the Sporting News, sources originally offered Marks a three-year deal with the Russian ownership having a say in the personnel matters. Well we’ve all seen how that worked out. Marks wasn’t having that (smartly) and decided to turn that down.

It was almost over for the Nets, make no mistake about it. The next candidate was Arturas Karnisovas, the Denver Assistant GM. But the Nets could not afford to let Marks walk away.

Sporting News sources close to Marks reported that Marks accepted the job ONLY after it was understood that there would be “less involvement from the committee” and “more power and control”.

Now everyone can step back and see if the open letter from Mikhail Prokhorov was legit or was he blowing smoke.

Question: Can you name the owner of the San Antonio Spurs? Good luck thinking about that one off your head.

It’s Peter Holt.

Here’s the point.

There was a time that I could not spell Mikhail Prokhorov, much less pronounce it. I would do radio analysis PRAYING that I didn’t butcher his name. Now I can spell it easily and pronounce it.

That’s the problem. Prokhorov has not learned his lesson yet. He hired Sean Marks to run the Brooklyn Nets. Now that he is hired, let the man run the team. Sean Marks is used to do things a certain way…

The right way.

We’ve seen the Nets do things a certain way…

It hasn’t worked.

Sean Marks was mentioned by Prokhorov to have strong leadership and independent thinking. Does he really know what independent means here?

Independent means that Sean Marks is coming in to overhaul everything in the front office which is going to anger a lot of people aka this basketball committee that is currently running the franchise. That is going to be  the only way the Nets fans are going to know that Marks is making a difference. It is the only way that the Nets are going to go in the right direction.

This era can go two ways: real bad or successful. Anyone coming out of San Antonio has high pedigree and knows how things are supposed to go. Let’s look at two recent former Spurs employees in Brett Brown of the Philadelphia 76ers and Mike Budenholzer of the Atlanta Hawks.

Brett Brown walked into a situation that was WORSE than the Nets in dysfunction, being run by Sam Hinkie. No direction, no explanation, and the 76ers are one of the worst teams in the NBA. So bad that Jerry Colangelo was brought in to clean up the mess.

Mike Budenholzer had a strong foundation in Atlanta with a plan going forward. Granted, the GM at the time was Danny Ferry, one of the candidates Brooklyn passed over was running things, but look at the Hawks now.

Sean Marks is walking into a tough situation here. A situation that can frustrate a person into just quitting. Look at Deron Williams. Look at Lionel Hollins.

Let’s hope Sean Marks isn’t next in a few years.