Authorities say, Lance Blanks, the former general manager of the Phoenix Suns, died at the age of 56.
Blanks rose to fame as a member of the University of Texas basketball team from 1988 to 1990, where he helped the Longhorns reach the Elite Eight in his final year.
“Lance was a light for all those who knew him,” said NBA executive and former Detroit Pistons Joe Dumars in a statement. “It’s been an honor to call him one of my closest friends.”
“I will be eternally grateful for all of his help over the years.” His legacy will be carried on not only by his family but by everyone whose lives he improved. Brother, you will be sorely missed.”
Blanks was the Detroit Pistons’ 26th pick in the 1990 NBA Draft, and he spent time with them and the Minnesota Timberwolves before going overseas.
Following his playing career, he joined the San Antonio Spurs as a scout in 2000 and was promoted to director of scouting two years later. Blanks worked as an assistant general manager for the Cleveland Cavaliers for five seasons before becoming the Suns’ general manager from 2010 to 2013.
Blanks has been a television analyst for Texas basketball on the Longhorn Network since 2020. His 1,322 points are the eighth most in Texas history and the most by a two-year Longhorn.
His 20.0 points per game with Texas rank fourth all-time, and he finished his career as the school’s all-time steal leader.