Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News answered questions from fans on a variety of topics, including one concerning potential hirings within the Knicks front office. In the case of Aller, the Knicks were negotiating a deal when NBA play was suspended on March 11.
“Before the coronavirus shutdown, the Knicks, according to sources, requested and received permission from the Cavaliers to talk to their capologist, Brock Aller,” Bondy wrote. “More recently, I heard the Knicks made him an offer to become assistant GM and negotiations were ongoing.”
Aller’s official title with the Cavaliers is senior director of basketball operations, with his vital role as the team’s capologist a key facet of the position.
In that role, Aller had previously helped the Cavaliers maintain a championship-level team during the team’s string of four consecutive trips to the NBA Finals and the 2016 title run.
In 2017, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert elevated Aller to his current role and Koby Altman to general manager, then explained Aller’s value to the front office.
“He’s probably one of the finer capologists in the league,” Gilbert said. “He knows more about the cap than probably PricewaterhouseCoopers knows about the IRS code. He lives with the cap, with the collective bargaining agreement.
“He comes up with ideas on things that the league has never heard of, they have to go into their committees to check if it’s OK or not. He’s sort of a savant with this. He’s a space-creator, the kind of space that Koby will need in the cap. He was involved in probably every trade the last few years in a creative sense. He was instrumental in the New York Knicks trade [for J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert].”
The Knicks have not reached the postseason and have had perennial problems attracting top free agents. Prior to play being suspended, they had a 21-45 mark, which followed a 17-65 record during the 2018-19 season.