Rich Cho made some major changes to the Charlotte Hornets roster this offseason, but it looks like that didn't get as much recognition as one might believe. Cho finished fifth in Executive of the Year voting. R.C. Buford of the San Antonio finished in first, with Neil Olshey finishing second.
2015-16 NBA Executive of the Year voting results. pic.twitter.com/IJoYIT5kb0— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpearsESPN) May 9, 2016
EOY has always been a difficult award to judge. Most roster decisions are made well ahead of the time they're going to be noticed, and giving away a yearly award for a position that requires foresight causes difficulties. That's why guys like R.C. Buford and Masai Ujiri are constantly on the list. They're well respected across the league, and everybody acknowledges moves that they made years ago are paying off now.
However, this year was a little different from previous seasons. There were front offices out there that made massive roster changes that completely changed the shape of a team. The Hornets were one of those teams, and Cho finishing fifth feels like a crime when some of the names ahead of him made very minimal moves.
In one offseason, Cho traded away Lance Stephenson, brought in Nicolas Batum for Noah Vonleh, signed Jeremy Lin, and brought in multiple players to fit the new offensive system the organization wanted to run. When approaching the trade deadline, in need of a perimeter stopper, the Hornets front office traded for Courtney Lee and his defensive impact was felt immediately. The roster looks wildly different from last season, and they were successful enough to earn a playoff seed and finish tied for third in the conference.
Beggars can't be choosers, and Cho did get quite a handful of third place votes meaning there are voters out there that saw what Cho and the Hornets had done. He even received a first place vote. However, it's pretty clear that nobody is really sure on who to vote for when Bob Myers and Masai Ujiri are finishing in third and fourth place following an offseason where they made very few moves in comparison to Charlotte.
Of course, all of this is nitpicking and it's nothing to get too worked up about. It's just disappointing to not see Cho get a little more recognition is all.