Tom Gores welcomes Trajan Langdon as Detroit Pistons’ President of Basketball Operations: ‘Successful at every level’

June 3, 2024 | Homepage News The Pistons

Tom Gores welcomes Trajan Langdon as Detroit Pistons’ President of Basketball Operations: ‘Successful at every level’

DETROIT – The Detroit Pistons announced recently that Trajan Langdon has been named President of Basketball Operations. Per team policy, terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Langdon will report to owner Tom Gores and will expand the current team by recruiting additional innovative and experienced executives, with an emphasis on strategy, player personnel and operations.

“I have committed to building a front office in Detroit that brings together the most advanced capabilities and creative basketball minds,” Gores said. “Trajan is an accomplished front office executive with an impressive track record. He’s worked his way up and seen it all as a player, scout and executive. He’s been successful at every level. I’m confident he will very swiftly get us to the standard of excellence I expect from every business.”

Langdon, 48, joins the Pistons with 12 years of front office and scouting experience, including most recently as General Manager of the New Orleans Pelicans from 2019-2024. Prior to his time in New Orleans, Langdon served in front offices for the Brooklyn Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers and San Antonio Spurs.

Gores said the Pistons ran a thorough process, interviewed many worthy candidates and conducted extensive diligence. The club retained executive search firm TurnkeyZRG, including managing director and former NBA executive Billy King, to assist with the search.

“What was important to me was finding someone who was a hands-on leader and effective communicator that could connect with people, motivate our front office and deliver results,” Gores said. “I knew Trajan was universally praised and respected around the league, but as I spent time with him, he articulated a thoughtful, detailed plan to create a culture of winning and getting the best out of the talented people we have in our organization.”

Langdon said he has already begun interviewing candidates for additional roles.

“It’s an honor for me to join the Detroit Pistons and I’m excited for the opportunity,” Langdon said. “I have spent considerable time with Tom over the past few weeks and am fully aligned with his expectations for the challenge ahead. The work starts immediately, and I appreciate Tom giving me the opportunity to build on the foundation that has been laid and help this team compete at the highest level. There is great tradition and history associated with this franchise. I’m excited to build on that for everyone associated with the organization and the passionate sports fans of Detroit.”

He also noted that Detroit’s young talent, salary cap flexibility and draft position gives the organization flexibility and tangible avenues for improvement.

“The young talent on the roster along with the No. 5 pick, a second-round selection and salary cap space provide significant opportunity to enhance the team this offseason and in the future,” Langdon said. “I’m excited to get on the ground in Detroit and start preparation for the draft and our strategy beyond.”

Langdon joined the Pelicans organization as General Manager on May 19, 2019, where he served for five seasons. During the 2021-22 season, he played an important role in executing a mid-season trade with the Portland Trail Blazers which netted the Pelicans guard CJ McCollum and forward Larry Nance Jr. Those additions proved integral in solidifying the Pelicans playoff push that season. The Pelicans would go on to win both Play-In Tournament games to advance to the first round of the 2022 NBA Playoffs, where they would push the Phoenix Suns to six games. Langdon was a key contributor in assembling the 2023-24 Pelicans team that finished 49-33 and advanced to the first round of the NBA Playoffs.

Prior to joining the New Orleans organization, Langdon served as the Assistant General Manager for the Brooklyn Nets from 2016-2019. While also serving as General Manager of the Brooklyn Nets’ NBA G League affiliate – the Long Island Nets – he was named the 2018-19 NBA G League Basketball Executive of the Year. Long Island tied for the NBA G League’s best record (34-16), earned the franchise’s first postseason berth as the No. 1 playoff seed in the Eastern Conference, and advanced to the 2019 NBA G League Finals.

Leading NBA draft efforts for the Pelicans and Nets, Langdon was instrumental in the selections of Jarrett Allen, Caris LeVert, Zion Williamson, Trey Murphy and Herb Jones.

Langdon began his post-playing career as a personnel scout for the San Antonio Spurs from 2012-2015 before accepting a job with the Cleveland Cavaliers as Director of Player Administration and Basketball Operations in 2015.

A first-round pick (No. 11 overall) of the Cavaliers in 1999, Langdon played three seasons for Cleveland, where he appeared in 119 games and became the first Alaskan to play in the NBA. He also played nine seasons overseas in Russia, Turkey and Italy. His best years came with CSKA Moscow, where he was a two-time Euroleague champion (2006, 2008), Euroleague Final Four MVP (2008), two-time All-Euroleague First Team selection (2007, 2008) and All-Euroleague Second Team selection (2006). He was also named to the Euroleague 2001-10 All-Decade Team.

A native of Anchorage, Alaska, Langdon played collegiately at Duke, where he left as the school’s all-time leader in 3-point field goals made and was a First-Team All-ACC selection (1997-99) and consensus Second-Team All-American (1999). He graduated from Duke with degrees in mathematics and history. Langdon won a bronze medal with the USA Basketball National Team at the 1998 FIBA World Championship.

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