Examining track records of Kings’ front office candidates Rick Sund and Scott Layden

In the past 48 hours, Scott Layden and Rick Sund have emerged in the Sacramento Kings’ search for a new basketball operations leader.  As candidates being considered by Vivek Ranadivé  according to multiple reports, Layden and Sund bring years of NBA front office experience.  But their track records offer a mixed bag of results.

Layden, who is reported to be among the top three in Ranadivé’s wishlist, has spent the last season working as an assistant GM for the San Antonio Spurs.  He also was in charge of the Jazz’s front office in the 1990s, when Utah made back-to-back Finals appearances against the Chicago Bulls.

However, his last go-around as the man in charge came with the New York Knicks nearly 10 years ago.  His four-year stint as leader of the Knicks’ front office was remembered most for the bad contracts he shelled out, including Allan Houston’s massive six-year, $100 million deal.

Like Layden, Sund had success early in his career.  At 28 years old, he became one of the youngest executives in league history with the Dallas Mavericks during the 1980s.  And he was part of the Mavs’ organization when they posted a pretty stellar draft record, overseeing the selections of players like Detlef Schrempf and Derek Harper.

But his previous two stops have posted lukewarm success.  In Seattle, Sund oversaw the Ray Allen era, which yielded just two postseason appearances in during his six-year tenure. And in Atlanta, Sund helped the Hawks make the postseason four times, but they never got further than the second round.

Below is a compilation of some of the major moves Sund and Layden made throughout their careers as NBA executives.

Scott Layden, Assistant GM for the San Antonio Spurs

  • As vice president of basketball operations of the Utah Jazz (1992-99)
    • Drafted Bryon Russell (1993), Greg Ostertag (1995) and Andrei Kirilenko (1999).
    • Acquired Jeff Hornacek, Sean Green and a 1995 second-pick for Jeff Malone and a 1994 first-round pick.
    • Signed role players like Antoine Carr, Greg Foster, Shandon Anderson and Howard Eisley to manageable deals.
    • Re-signed Greg Ostertag to a six-year, $38.1 million contract.
    • Kept core of John Stockton, Karl Malone and Jerry Sloan in tact.
  • As team president and general manager of the New York Knicks (1999-2003)
    • Re-signed Latrell Sprewell to a five-year, $62 million extension.
    • Acquired Luc Longley, Glen Rice, Vernon Maxwell, Vladimir Stepania, Lazaro Borrell and Travis Knight in a four-team deal that sent Patrick Ewing to Seattle and Chris Dudley to the Phoenix Suns.
    • Re-signed Allan Houston to a six year, $100 million extension.
    • Acquired Shandon Anderson and Howard Eisley in a three-team trade that sent Glen Rice to Houston and Muggsy Bogues to Dallas.  Anderson had just signed a six-year, $41-million contract.  Eisley was signed to a seven-year, $41 million contract.
    • Acquired Antonio McDyess, Frank Williams and a 2003 second round pick from Denver for Marcus Camby, Nene and Mark Jackson.
    • Acquired Keith Van Horn in a four-team trade that sent Latrell Sprewell to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
    • Drafted Donell Harvey (2000), Mike Sweetney (2003) with first round picks.

Rick Sund, Senior Advisor for the Atlanta Hawks

  • As Hawks vice president and general manager (2008-12)
    • Selected Jeff Teague with the 19th overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft.
    • Acquired Jamal Crawford for Acie Law and Speedy Claxton.
    • Re-signed Marvin Williams to a five-year contract extension valued at $37.5 million
    • Agreed to five-year contract extension with Al Horford valued at $60 million.
    • Agreed to a six-year contract extension with Joe Johnson valued at $124 million.
    • Acquired Kirk Hinrich and Hilton Armstrong from Washington for Mike Bibby, Maurice Evans, Jordan Crawford and a draft pick.
  • As Seattle SuperSonics general manager (2001-07)
    • Drafted Vladimir Radmanovic (2001), Nick Collison (2003), Luke Ridnour (2003), Robert Swift (2004), Johan Petro (2005) and Mouhamed Sene (2006) with first round picks.
    • Signed center Calvin Booth to a six-year, $34 million contract.
    • Re-signed center Jerome James to a three-year, $15 million contract.
    • Acquired Ray Allen, Kevin Ollie, Ronald Murray and a conditional 2003 first round draft pick from Milwaukee for Gary Payton and Desmond Mason.
  • As Detroit Pistons executive vice president and general manager (1995-2001)
    • Drafted Theo Ratliff (1995), Jerome Williams (1996) and Scot Pollard (1997) with first round picks.
    • Acquired Jerry Stackhouse and Eric Montross from the Philadelphia 76ers for Theo Ratliff, Aaron McKie and a first-round draft choice.
  • As executive with the Dallas Mavericks (1979-94)
    • Drafted Mark Aguirre (1981), Rolando Blackman (1981), Dale Ellis (1983), Derek Harper (1983), Detlef Scrhempf (1985), Jim Jackson (1992) and Jamal Mashburn (1993) with first round picks.
    • Traded Dale Ellis for Al Wood.
    • Signed Sam Perkins to a multi-year contract.
    • Acquired Adrian Dantley and a first-round pick from Detroit for Mark Aguirre.
    • Acquired Herb Williams and a second-round pick from Indiana for Detlef Schrempf and a 1990 or 1991 second-round pick.
    • Signed Roy Tarpley to a contract extension despite an earlier suspension for violating the NBA’s anti-drug policy.
    • Acquired Fat Lever from Denver for Washington’s 1990 first-round pick and Detroit’s 1991 first-round pick.


Jonathan Santiago
Jonathan Santiago serves Cowbell Kingdom as senior editor specializing in writing, podcasting and video production. He also handles the majority of CK’s day-to-day beat coverage of the Kings.

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