Clippers' Baylor named executive of year

Updated: May 17, 2006, 10:08 PM ET
Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- Elgin Baylor, the Los Angeles Clippers' vice president of basketball operations since 1986, has been selected the NBA's Executive of the Year in voting by 45 league executives.

Baylor received 15 votes to eight for Toronto's Bryan Colangelo, who finished second in the voting.

Baylor will be presented with the award by Stan McNeal of the Sporting News before Game 6 of the Western Conference semifinals against Phoenix on Thursday night.

The Clippers, longtime NBA doormats, finished the regular season with a 47-35 record -- their best since the 1974-75 season, when they played in Buffalo and won a franchise-record 49 games.

The Clippers qualified for the playoffs for the first time in nine years and reached the second round for the first time since 1976. They trail the Phoenix Suns 3-2 in the Western Conference semifinals.

Baylor provided the Clippers with their starting backcourt last summer, acquiring Sam Cassell in a trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves and signing Cuttino Mobley to a free-agent contract.

Then Baylor swung a midseason trade with the Seattle SuperSonics, acquiring Vladimir Radmanovic for Chris Wilcox to give the Clippers a needed long-distance shooting threat.

Cassell, Mobley and Radmanovic have teamed with Elton Brand, Corey Maggette, Chris Kaman, Quinton Ross and Shaun Livingston to give the Clippers a solid rotation.

The 71-year-old Baylor was a 10-time all-NBA first-team selection as a player for the Lakers, averaging 27.4 points in a 14-year career. He was the rookie of the year in 1959 and was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1976.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press