In the 2013 offseason, the Denver Nuggets have undergone a huge front office makeover. Most recently, the Nuggets obtained a new assistant GM and executive vice president of basketball operations when they hired Arturas Karnisovas.
Karnisovas replaces former vice president Pete D’Alessandro, who left the Nuggets this offseason to take the helm as the GM of the Sacramento Kings.
In the past five seasons, Karnisovas worked with the Houston Rockets under GM Daryl Morey. He most recently held a position as the director of scouting for the team. Before gaining that title, he was the Rockets’ international scout. Prior to joining the Rockets, he worked in basketball operations for the NBA league office.
The Nuggets have bolstered a number of players from Europe in the past decade. Most recently, the team acquired the rights to French big-man Joffery Lauvergne in the 2013 NBA Draft. Team president Josh Kroenke will work closely with Karnisovas, who will aid with day-to-day operations with scouting and player personnel matters.
The assistant GM has an eye for talent from overseas.
On the Rockets, Karnisovas helped the team obtain Turkish Center Omer Asik from the Chicago Bulls. Asik has emerged as one of the up-and-coming players in the league and will be a huge part of the Rockets’ success in 2013-14. Before coming to the NBA, Asik played in Turkey for Fenerbahce. He won a Turkish National Championship in 2007-08 and was an All-Star in the league from 2007-09.
Before working in offices, Karnisovas had a coveted career in Europe.
He aided Lithuania in winning Olypmic bronze medals in 1992 and 1996. He played his entire basketball career overseas, reaching the Euroleague Final Four three times. In ’96, he was honored as FIBA’s European player of the year.
The Lithuanian has an extensive amount of basketball knowledge, which will aid in the rebuilding of the team’s front office. In a whirlwind of an offseason, the Nuggets have made few changes that seem to make sense. The addition of Karnisovas is one of them.