There is a lot of speculation out there in the world that Stan Van Gundy could be axed if the Orlando Magic cannot complete the 3-1 series comeback. The logic flows like this: If the Magic loose then Dwight Howard is going to be really unhappy. And he can be a free agent in 2012, so the Magic need to do anything they can to appease him. If a new coach will do that, Orlando will go get one and SVG is axed.
Except, the guy who signs the checks for Van Gundy and GM Otis Smith — Magic Basketball CEO Bob Vander Weide — told the Orando Sentinel those changes are not coming.
“I’ve been around now 20 years in the NBA and I’ve got a good idea of other people’s skill-sets are out there, and Stan and Otis are as good a complement as any in the league….”
“You can second-guess, but the changes we made were made to win a championship,” Vander Weide said. “We didn’t feel we were going to win with the guys we had.”
He takes the big-picture view — we weren’t going to win it all and we had to do something, so we did and made sweeping changes that included a gamble on Gilbert Arenas. That didn’t work, so we’ll try something else.
That’s a nice attitude to have. Patience is a virtue. But this franchise still has to retain Dwight Howard, that will forever be the biggest hurdle, whether it is the summer of 2012 or if he picks up his option and it is 2013. And the moves by Smith and the coaching of Van Gundy will play a role in all that.