Orlando made a great hire by adding the former Pacers coach
The Orlando Sentinel reports that the Magic have hired former Pacers coach Frank Vogel as their new coach.
The move comes after a day’s worth of speculation that the two were close in talks. The Grizzlies had also been pursuing Vogel after coach Larry Bird inexplicably decided to let him walk in order to promote assistant Nate McMillan. Vogel made the playoffs every season except 2015 with the Pacers — the one year Paul George missed nearly the entire season — and only missed it by a game then. He has two Eastern Conference Finals on his resume and several top-five defensive finishes.
In Orlando, he takes over a young and up-and-coming team looking to add veteran talent in order to make the leap, very similar to the situation he came into in Indiana when he was promoted to interim coach after Jim O’Brien was fired in 2011. He has a good set of talent to work with, from Victor Oladipo to Nikola Vucevic to Aaron Gordon to Mario Hezonja. The Magic are expected to retain Evan Fournier in restricted free agency and have the 11th pick in the draft. They are expected to pursue veteran free agents with wide cap space this summer.
The Grizzlies miss out big time here, and now will likely not wind up with an “on-paper” improvement over Dave Joerger. The Magic wind up with the best coach to manage both development and short-term interests of playoff contention. After Scott Skiles’ stunning resignation last week, the Magic came out big winners with Vogel, who is a considerable upgrade on all fronts.
Frank Vogel joins the Magic