DALLAS -- The Dallas Mavericks hired Houston Rockets executive Gersson Rosas as general manager on Monday, filling a spot that technically had been vacant since Don Nelson left the franchise eight years ago.
Dallas owner Mark Cuban said in a radio interview that the Mavericks hired the 35-year-old native of Colombia because they "need to get smarter as an organization and we need to really expand what we're doing."
"We try to take pride in being one of the most technologically advanced teams in all of sports, not just the NBA, and to keep on pushing the envelope in directions that I wanted to go, we needed to not just add brainpower but organizational management and process power," Cuban said.
President of basketball operations Donnie Nelson has informally held his father's old title.
Cuban said his own strength is "pushing the envelope," and Nelson's is player evaluation. But he said the team needed someone with "stronger organizational and management skills" and asked Nelson to find someone. Nelson came back with Rosas' name.
The move was first reported by Yahoo! Sports.
Rosas will report to Nelson. He spent nine years with the Rockets, rising from an intern to vice-president of basketball operations. He played a role in shaping the roster for a Houston franchise that beat the Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers and Atlanta in the pursuit of free agent centre Dwight Howard.
"When we found somebody with that process and management skill like Gersson and also somebody who has experience working with an analytics group, working with a D-League team, working in talent evaluation, that was just an added plus that made him the perfect candidate," Cuban said.
Rosas also spent time as general manager of the Rio Grande Vipers, the Rockets' developmental team. A decade ago, he was a graduate assistant with the University of Houston men's team. He was also a basketball co-ordinator for the Venezuelan national team at the 2002 world championships.