Throughout his playing career, Steve Kerr was known for his accuracy. The Phoenix Suns are likely hoping his first moves as the team's new president of basketball operations and general manager are accurate as well.
Kerr will sign a three-year contract to take over the role from coach Mike D'Antoni. D'Antoni has held both titles since Bryan Colangelo resigned as president and general manager in February 2006 to take a similar post with the Toronto Raptors.
Kerr told the The Arizona Republic that he thought it was the appropriate time to take the position. Last year, Kerr wasn't ready transition from his current role as a TNT analyst to an NBA front office role. The move would have allowed him less time with his three school-age children in San Diego.
"I just felt comfortable that this is the right time," Kerr told The Republic. "I felt that I could really add something to the organization that is already so strong and is one of the best in the NBA. I think I can help with my experience playing in the league and getting to know the NBA as a broadcaster."
He confirmed his new job Saturday during the telecast of Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals in Cleveland.
"I would like to say that I am going to take the general manager job in Phoenix," he said in a statement released by TNT.
He had kind words for fellow members of the TNT crew, Marv
Albert and Doug Collins.
"I want to thank you guys and everybody in the truck and all
the people in Atlanta for the wonderful experience," Kerr said.
"I'm looking forward to my new opportunity, but I am going to miss
Turner Sports president David Levy issued a statement thanking Kerr for his work.
"The professional qualities that made Steve a successful player
and analyst will help him succeed in his new role with the Phoenix
Kerr has been with TNT since retiring from a 15-year NBA career in 2003. He declined to comment on specific topics, but will likely address the Suns roster and payroll situation during Wednesday's news conference.
Kerr, part of five NBA championship teams with Chicago and San Antonio, helped pave the way for Suns owner Robert Sarver and his backers to purchase the team from Jerry Colangelo for a reported $401 million three years ago. The final payment of the purchase is due in June.
Kerr was a partner in the purchase and acted as a team consultant and is a close friend of Sarver's. He was long rumored as a GM candidate when Colangelo left the job about 15 months ago.
"I recognized I could add something," Kerr said. "I think we have great people in place who know what's going on.
"When I was playing, I always thought about being involved whether it was in coaching or management because I love the game and I wanted to be involved."
Kerr starred at the University of Arizona and is a close friend of Wildcats coach Lute Olson.
He returns to the NBA team that drafted him in the second round, the 50th choice overall, in 1988. Kerr played in 26 games for Phoenix as a rookie and then was traded to Cleveland for a second-round draft pick.
Kerr, who retired as a player in 2003, holds the NBA record for career 3-point percentage at .454. He also holds the record for 3-point shooting percentage in a season at .524 in the 1994-95 with Chicago. He made the winning shot for the Bulls against Utah in Game 6 of the 1997 NBA Finals.
Kerr, 41, was born in Beirut, Lebanon. His father, president of American University in Beirut, was assassinated in 1984.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.