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  • 04/06/2012, 12:11AM ET

Stan Van Gundy Should not have let it be known that he was told that Dwight Howard wanted him fired.

Ruiz232004 (0-2-0) vs Ghosty (3-0-0)
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Stan Van Gundy was unprofessional in taking a private in house matter and making it public. He has just created more controversy and fueled the fire in a season long distraction his team has been facing. Any chances of the Magic making a run in the playoffs has now been shot down and I expect a first round flame out followed by SVG's firing.


Though I agree it shouldn't have been done, I am not about to crucify Stan over this.

What we have to do is put things in perspective. This isn't the first time something similar has happened to him. Remember his exit in Miami? It was largely believed it was a power play by Shaq and Pat Riley had no choice but to fire Stan. Stan never said anything about it, but really, he got screwed over by Shaq.

Now forward it to this season, where despite the media's coverage of the good guys' Chris Paul and Dwight Howard, they've really held the team hostage like Melo last year.

Despite this image that Dwight tries to portray, it would not be a crack-pipe theory to think there's been some major play on his part at many times during the season. His "change of heart", to me, is less innocent than what it may seem.

And through all this drama, uncertainty, rumors, and preferred trade list Stan has tried his best to keep the team focused and competitive.

Eventually every man has a limit, and maybe it was not the most professional thing he did, but it was a good thing..it sheds some light into what Dwight really is doing, despite his innocent media interviews.

To be continued...


Van Gundy as the head coach is the leader of the team and as such should be least concerned with how he is perceived in the media and in the public eye.

Every casual NBA fan knows that Dwight Howard is at best a confused young man whose desire to be adored by fans out weighs his desire to be a leader.

The Orlando Magic have been lacking team chemistry all season and it is obvious when even after being summoned to circle around their coach they take turns languishing on the bench during time outs.

Stan Van Gundy didn't just hurt Dwight's image he has hurt his own image in the eyes of others around the league. NBA front offices will hesitate to hire a coach that is perceived to be a loose cannon and unable to keep private matters in house.

Dwight Howard's psyche has now been shattered and by doing so Van Gundy has betrayed the trust of his other players whom have now been forced to choose sides.

Stan Van Gundy has exposed the truth and in doing so revealed the weaknesses of his team for all to see. A fractured locker room, a fallen star, and he a broken man.


Continuing my argument (ran out of space)

Stan has been dealing with this for a while now, not only acting professionally but despite all the drama, media circus and rumors surrounding Dwight, he also kept this team intact for the most part. His job here is not to maintain a certain media image but to try to keep his team focused and motivated, regardless of the distractions, even if that distraction is Dwight.

This has been going on for a while and it's not Stan's creation nor is his fault.

If you want to blame anyone in this story, even more than Dwight himself, is Otis Smith. Otis Smith has lacked the credibility, the authority to resolve, to control this situation.

Rather, this has been a circus, and he hasn't even been able to buffer the rumors and leaks coming out of his locker room. He has failed at keeping Dwight from creating chaos and now he's failed Stan, and Stan is desperate.

So between Otis' ineptitude and Dwight's less than innocent maneuvering, this isn't any ordinary situation and therefore we shouldn't judge SVG with those same parameters.


Emerald says "His job here is not to maintain a certain media image but to try to keep his team focused and motivated, regardless of the distractions, even if that distraction is Dwight."

I disagree with the notion that this was a "Hail Mary" move to regain a locker room he was so willing to leave immediately after ending his press conference. I for one wouldn't invest my self in a leader who was willing to abandon his team in a moment's notice.

If your boss was to conduct an interview with your local newspaper and states he understands the company he is running isn't producing as it has in the past or meeting expectations, but if he was to be fired the next day he could care less. He continues to say oh and by the way one of our best workers (YOU) has talked to management and has said that the workers are not responding well to my management style. The reporter then asks him to name whom he is speaking of and he thans exposes you for speaking to upper management about your concerns that your boss was unable to lead the company to meet and exceed expectations.

I would be unable to work for such a boss, and for Howard to continue to do so speaks volumes of his character


Did you see the interview? Stan left after Dwight came with an odd and quite frankly, eerie hug asking what the topic was. It was awkward for everyone. And after he left, Dwight proceeded to say he didn't say anything to anybody, which is a blatant lie.

Also, to think that Dwight is indeed as innocent as he tries to portray himself is being disingenuous at the very least. He's been smarter about that than say a Carmelo Anthony or a Chris Paul, but you can bet there's been many major power moves from him and his camp behind the scenes, one such being that he only resigned because he didn't want to be traded to the Lakers and be Kobe's sidekick, not because he had a change of heart or because he loved Orlando.

Let's be frank here, by everything we read, Dwight is the manipulator here and Otis is the incompetent one. Not Stan. Stan didn't create the drama. Stan didn't prolong the drama. Stan, quite the contrary, has held it all together quite remarkably.

To blame it then on SVG is not understanding the circumstances.

Like I said, Otis Smith is the one who should be fired. And Dwight is the one who should be reprimanded.

April 6, 2012  10:18 AM ET

Stan van Gundy is a Ron Jeremy look-alike.

April 7, 2012  07:22 AM ET

Van Gundy as the head coach is the leader of the team and as such should be least concerned with how he is perceived in the media and in the public eye.

Van Gundy made the right move here. His job isn't to carefully construct a media image, but rather to lead his team. There is little question that he did everything he could to handle the issues in-house and it wasn't working.

The natural assumption is this is Van Gundy attempting to save his own **** by throwing a player under the bus and airing team dirty laundry. That might even be the natural inclination for most people. But that's not in Van Gundys character. He's been in this situation before so we know he's not doing it for personal reasons.

Sometimes prima donna athletes think they are bigger than the team and don't want to respond to coaching. After exhausting all internal options, sometimes the only thing left to try is embarass the guy publicly and hope he responds to public pressure. Sometimes it works, sometimes it backfires (ask Ozzie Guillen) but sometimes it's just a last resort attempt to turn things around.

Obviously that team isn't going anywhere without Dwight giving top effort so you try everything you can to get it from him. Sure it's a desperation move...but when it's near the end of the game and you are trailing, you can either take a knee and assure you don't win, or you can throw up the hail mary and at least give yourself a chance, no matter how remote.

This is Van Gundy's 'hail mary', nothing more.

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April 7, 2012  10:30 PM ET
QUOTE(#4):

That would be great stunt double work while he looks for another coaching job.

Personally I hope they don't fire Van Gundy. Doing so sets a precedent that coaches aren't as important as players so there is no need to respect them. It solidifies in boneheads mind that he is bigger than the team.

April 7, 2012  11:22 PM ET

He absolutely did the right thing. These are not high school students, and the players don't need to be protected. If the roles were reversed, we'd hear about it, and the common thought would be that Van Gundy was wrong for hating his players.

I hate how professional sports always elevates the athletes, and we then chastise the coaches when they say anything about the players that seems negative. If Howard wants to create a positive image for himself, he shouldn't do things that could take away from that image.

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April 7, 2012  11:53 PM ET
QUOTE(#7):

I get what left is saying about this being an in-house matter, but honestly I have no problem with Stan letting the cat out of the bag.Dwight Howard, much like LeBron James, obviously cares a great deal about the way the public perceives him. And after the "I want to be traded... no I want to stay in Orlando now... ok I want to be traded again... Ok I'm staying in Orlando" debacle it's about time that Dwight was knocked down a peg or two, and if publicly airing his selfish demands is the way to teach Dwight some humility then I'm all for it.

Well said.

April 7, 2012  11:55 PM ET
QUOTE(#10):

I really liked right's arguments.And sort of piggy backing on what he said about Otis Smith, in my opinion it would be a joke to fire SVG.Any shortcomings the Magic have had stem from a horribly put-together team. The Magic have made bad move after bad move over the years, and in all honesty Van Gundy has done a pretty good job with the crappy players he's been given.If anyone should be fired, it's Otis Smith.

Thanks and yea, I think Otis deserves huge amounts of blame for all of what's happening.

April 7, 2012  11:58 PM ET

SVG was done, in my opinion, since Dwight said he's coming back. There are even rumors that management offered to fire SVG if Dwight stayed.

April 8, 2012  12:17 AM ET

Coaches have been fired by players in the past. In the history of the association many notable players have used their influence with the team when a coach whom has tried and failed to lead them to a championship including Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan.

 
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