After what was one of the most bizarre seasons for an NBA franchise, the Orlando Magic have fired head coach Stan Van Gundy and GM Otis Smith:
The Magic were stradled all season with the possibility of losing star Dwight Howard, going back and forth between trading the all-star center before he could become a free agent or signing him to a long term deal. Howard eventually opted in to the final year of his current contract the day of the trade deadline.
Things for the Magic became even more uncomfortable in March when Van Gundy revealed that Howard had previously requested Van Gundy’s dismissal by management. Still, the Magic were able to make the playoffs before losing to the Pacer in the first round while playing without Howard, who missed the series with a back injury.
Smith was promoted to Magic general manager in 2006 after a brief NBA and international playing career and a marketing stint with the Golden State Warriors. The Magic reached the playoffs in every season Smith was GM, with Van Gundy as head coach for five of those six seasons.
Van Gundy led the Magic to a 37-29 record this season despite the turmoil. Van Gundy has a career record of 371-208 in 8 seasons with the Magic and Miami Heat. His career .641 winning percentage is among the highest for active coaches.