Coming off Western Conference finals run, Trail Blazers extend GM Neil Olshey through 2024

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The <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nba/teams/portland/" data-ylk="slk:Trail Blazers">Trail Blazers</a> agreed to an extension with general manager Neil Olshey (right). (AP Photo/Greg Wahl-Stephens)
The Trail Blazers agreed to an extension with general manager Neil Olshey (right). (AP Photo/Greg Wahl-Stephens)

The Trail Blazers are going to run it back next year.

Three days after extending head coach Terry Stotts, the team has agreed to keep general manager Neil Olshey through the 2023-24 season, according to a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

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Olshey took over as the team’s GM in 2012 and quickly made a splash in his first month by selecting Damian Lillard and Meyers Leonard in the lottery. He grabbed C.J. McCollum in the following draft to form the team’s core that has reached six straight postseasons.

“Neil has done an exceptional job finding and keeping the talent that has made the Trail Blazers a perennial playoff team, culminating in this season's magical run to the Western Conference finals,” team chair Jody Allen said in a statement. “I have great confidence in the culture he has created in Portland, and I look forward to seeing it thrive and grow for years to come.”

Although Olshey has yet to win NBA Executive of the Year, he is well thought of around the league. The extension also comes on the heels of the Washington Wizards reportedly pursuing him to replace longtime team president Ernie Grunfeld.

Big decisions ahead for Olshey and the Trail Blazers

While the Blazers are certainly happy with their first conference finals appearance in 19 years, there is plenty of work ahead for Olshey and the rest of the front office.

Lillard, who was just named second-team All-NBA, is due for a supermax $191 million extension, and McCollum is also eligible for a big extension. Keeping the core together is almost a foregone conclusion at this point, but maintaining depth will be increasingly hard.

Starting forward Al-Farouq Aminu, along with key reserves Seth Curry, Enes Kanter and Rodney Hood, are all set to hit unrestricted free agency, while Jake Layman will be a restricted free agent if the team offers him a qualifying offer.

It will be difficult to keep multiple of those players because the team already has $123.8 million in salary committed next season. The Blazers do have Aminu’s Bird Rights, but keeping him may cause them to lose their mid-level exception, which would make improving the roster even tougher.

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