Saturday , Jan , 05 , 2008 Oly Sandor

Will Dwight Howard Stay Cool With Stan Van Gundy & Orlando Magic?

But Van Gundy might take note of the other options and something else. Today, word leaked that Howard, a 21 year-old phenomenon, had some role in management firing former Magic coach Brian Hill last summer …

Will Dwight Howard Stay Cool With Stan Van Gundy & Orlando Magic?

The AM Take: What should Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy do to win center Dwight Howard’s affection?

A) Laugh at his impersonations, specifically his Simbah from The Lion King.   
B) Tell him he liked his sticker jam and dance moves from last year’s All-Star game.
C) Make basketball fun again.

Correct answer: C. But Van Gundy might take note of the other options and something else. Yesterday, the Orlando Sentinel reported the Magics’ front office asked for Howard’s  opinion on whether to fire former Magic coach Brian Hill.

“I was cool with it (firing Hill),” the center said. “I think that’s very important. You have to like your coach.”  (Orlando Sentinel, Mike Bianchi)

I agree with Bianchi’s article. Coach Hill was at the end of his time. However, management consulting stars often leads to management catering to stars. It’s a fine line. Just ask the Toronto Raptors about those parking passes for Vince Carter’s mom. Years of Stephon Marbury enjoying a free ride in New York has clearly backfired.

Its one thing for management to quietly ask a star’s opinion, it’s another thing when that star takes their private discussion public.

Howard’s statement puts Van Gundy in a compromised position. Can the coach criticize his star? Then there are teammates. Must Howard like them, too?   

I’m not trying to hate on the young superstar. I’m a fan. Typically, he embodies the best of the NBA. Freakish athleticism. Charisma and charm. And most days, he says the right things.  

Yesterday’s comments were probably just a Freudian slip. Nevertheless, liking your coach and teammates is a bonus, but for professionals it’s not mandatory. 

What do you think of Howard’s comments?  Get at us in the comment box below or hit us up in our.

The AM Take is Oly’s morning thoughts on the NBA. All errors can be attributed to the time and his need for another cup of coffee. Click here to get his AM Take each morning and subscribe to his blog.