Stan Van Gundy Says Dwight Howard Wants Him Fired; Howard Denies it

by April 05, 2012

What an unmitigated disaster that is currently developing in Orlando. Following a recent report that Dwight Howard asked the Magic to fire their head coach, Stan Van Gundy confirmed the story this afternoon to reporters. Moments later, Dwight said it’s not true. Awkwaaaaard. Per the Orlando Sentinel: “I know he has,’ Van Gundy told reporters after the Magic completed their shootaround. ‘That’s just the way it is. Again, I’ve been dealing with that all year. It’s not anything real bothersome. You go out and do your job.’ Asked if it makes it harder to coach given that he thinks Howard is not committed to him, Van Gundy responded, ‘It’s not a matter of being committed to me. It’s a matter of being committed to the team and trying to do everything you can to help the team win games. That’s all I’m concerned with. As far as the other stuff, I don’t think that matters. I don’t need love and support here at my job. I’ll turn to my family for that. I don’t need these guys giving me hugs and pats on the back.’ Asked how he knows it’s true, Van Gundy said, ‘I was told it was true by people in our management right from the top.’ […] When Howard was asked point blank if he asked to have Van Gundy fired, Howard, responded, ‘What did I just say yesterday? I know you guys watch ESPN.’ Later, Howard said: ‘Whatever happens at the end of the season is not under my control. I am a player for the Magic. I am not the GM. I am not [team owner] Rich DeVos. I am not [CEO] Alex Martins. So that’s not my job. So you guys should stop with every other week it’s trying to find something, because there’s nothing. There’s nothing. I haven’t said anything to anybody about anything. Our main concern is winning. So all the other stuff should stop.'”