While in the process of preparing for the draft and evaluating coaching candidates, it appears that yet another change is in store for the Pacers headed into next season: According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Indiana’s Senior Vice President of Basketball Operations, Peter Dinwiddie, who started in ticket sales and worked his way up to a front office position and subsequent promotions as a salary cap guru, has been hired on as Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations by the Philadelphia 76ers.
Dinwiddie was a finalist for a top executive job with the Memphis Grizzlies in 2014 and also interviewed for the Bucks GM job in 2017, which highlights not only his desire to eventually run his own team but also goes to show that today’s news was likely only a matter of when rather than if.
In terms of job title, going from Senior VP of Basketball Operations to Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations appears like somewhat of a lateral move (if not, merely semantics in terms of actual material increase in decision-making power); however, per The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Keith Pompey, Dinwiddie is expected to work as second in command under Elton Brand in Philadelphia, whereas he was third in the pecking order with the Pacers, behind President of Basketball Operations Kevin Pritchard and General Manager Chad Buchanan. Terms and conditions of Dinwiddie’s new position weren’t released, but it seems plausible that his move up the ranks may have also come with a pay upgrade or perhaps greater long-term chance for upward mobility in order to incentivize him to leave the Pacers, where he’s worked for the last 14 years.
Notably, earlier in the summer, it was reported by Pompey that the Sixers were expected to inquire about Kevin Pritchard’s availability, so the fact that someone from his front office, which has a strong record for maintaining clean books and implementing positive culture, was later hired, albeit with Brand still in charge, can perhaps be interpreted as a feather in Indiana’s cap in terms of starting an executive tree — if there is such a thing.
As it pertains to the Pacers, Dinwiddie’s departure leaves an opening for a salary cap expert in the front office as the team continues the process of hiring a head coach.