PHOENIX — Ryan McDonough measured the questions, addressed each reporter by name, then delivered concise, thoughtful answers about his vision for the Phoenix Suns.
When he went to answer the final question, one about his two brothers sitting in the audience, McDonough struggled to get the words out, emotion cracking his voice, causing him to pause.
“I saw George Karl do this last night when he talked about his family,” McDonough said Thursday during his introductory news conference as general manager of the Suns. “He’s coach of the year, he’s a Hall of Famer, so hopefully you guys can give me a little rope here.”
What McDonough has immediately in front of him are the reins of a franchise in need of better direction.
A rising star among NBA executives and a member of a successful Boston sports family, the 33-year-old McDonough was hired on Tuesday to replace Lance Blanks, another former star-in-the-making who failed to lead the Suns to the playoffs in three seasons.
McDonough comes to Planet Orange with an impeccable record and a tireless work ethic that took him from a 23-year-old in the Boston Celtics video room to becoming Danny Ainge’s right-hand man as assistant general manager.
Read more about the Suns in Friday's Arizona Daily Star.