The Portland Trail Blazers have reportedly sent in motion the investigation of their longtime President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey. Olshey has been with the Blazers since June 4, 2012, and is one of the longest-tenured executives in the entire NBA.
In a report by Shams Charania of The Athletic, the Trail Blazers are looking at alleged workplace misconduct as the reason for the investigation. Jody Allen, the team’s owner, has agreed to enlist the services of an investigating firm to do a thorough and comprehensive check.
The decision to initiate the investigation was reportedly based on various sources indicating alleged workplace misconduct. Allen and Olshey were last seen attending the Indiana Pacers vs. Portland Trail Blazers game, which the latter won before the news broke out.
According to the said report, neither the Trail Blazers nor Allen had given an official statement when asked to comment.
Neil Olshey’s contribution to the Portland Trail Blazers has been under the radar, but quite impressive. He was the one who drafted Damian Lillard and has helped form the franchise into a perennial playoff contender. The Blazers have made the postseason eight straight times since Olshey came on board, originally as the GM before getting promoted in 2015.
If the reports are true, it would be the second time in a span of weeks that a high-ranking team executive has come under fire. Just a few weeks ago, the NBA was shaken by an ESPN report involving Robert Sarver, owner of the Phoenix Suns. League officials are currently launching their own investigation of alleged racial slurs and inappropriate actions committed by Sarver.
How will the recent developments affect the Portland Trail Blazers play?
To be certain, this will be a long and exhausting process that will be done with fairness. How this will affect the Portland Trail Blazers' play will be something to witness as the season progresses.
The Portland Trail Blazers' current streak of eight straight postseason appearances was built on the play of Damian Lillard. Behind the scenes was the stable foundation of Neil Olshey and former head coach Terry Stotts that guided the entire organization to its success. Stotts was fired coming into the season and was replaced by incumbent Chauncey Billups.
The Portland Trail Blazers are off to a wobbly start and are still looking for consistency on both ends of the floor. How the reports will impact their level of play is yet to be determined.