The results are in, and San Antonio Spurs GM R.C. Buford has won Executive of the Year for the second time in three years. Buford took home the hardware even though Portland Trail Blazers GM Neil Olshey had more first-place votes.
Full results of the voting can be found HERE.
Buford is well deserving of the award – as we pointed out a few weeks ago, by the way – for one of the most transformative off-seasons a contender could possibly undergo without losing a step. The acquisition of LaMarcus Aldridge, the biggest free agent on the market, was an unprecedented coup for the small-market Spurs, and Buford complemented it by adding David West on a massive pay cut. He did so ostensibly to be a part of San Antonio’s winning culture, and no one outside Gregg Popovich has done more to cultivate that culture than Buford.
Olshey was also a very deserving candidate for the way he managed to accelerate the Blazers’ rebuilding timeline in the wake of losing four starters, and no one knew that better than Buford:
If the Spurs manage to somehow win the Kevin Durant sweepstakes next summer, Buford will once again be on the shortlist of favorites for EOY, and deservedly so.
P.S.: Take another look at those results, and you’ll see one of the more comedic appearances on any award this NBA season: Sam Hinkie — ousted laughingstock Sam Hinkie — received a second-place vote and two third-place votes. Trust the process, indeed.