Phoenix Suns hire ex-Detroit Pistons assistant GM Josh Bartelstein as CEO

Detroit Free Press

United Mortgage Wholesale CEO and Michigan State basketball alumnus Matt Ishbia recently purchased the Phoenix Suns.

Now, Ishbia has poached former Detroit Pistons employee, and ex-Michigan basketball captain, to help run the show.

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Pistons assistant general manager Josh Bartelstein has been hired as the Suns’ new CEO, the Free Press confirmed with a source close to the situation. Bartelstein, 33, had risen through the ranks with the Pistons since being hired 2015.

Like Ishbia, he’s a former men’s basketball walk-on. Ishbia was a point guard at MSU from 1999-2002, and Bartelstein was the captain of the 2013 Michigan team that reached the national title game in 2013.

With the Pistons, Bartelstein worked closely with vice chairman Arn Tellem on the business side before transitioning to basketball operations. He served as chief of staff from 2015-19, when he was promoted to vice president of strategy, and then to executive vice president of operations in 2020. Bartelstein was involved with several major projects under Tellem, including the Pistons’ move back to Detroit in 2017 and the construction and opening of the Henry Ford Pistons Performance Center in 2019.

Last summer, he was promoted to assistant GM.

Bartelstein is the son of well-known NBA agent and Priority Sports and Entertainment CEO Mark Bartelstein.

ESPN was first to report the hiring.

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