NBA Rumors: Latest on Potential Candidates to Replace Stan Van Gundy

Matt ShetlerCorrespondent IApril 9, 2012

MIAMI, FL - FEBRUARY 19:  Orlando Magic head coach Stan Van Gundy reacts during a game against the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena on February 19, 2012 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

The Dwight Howard-Stan Van Gundy situation took a few turns over the weekend when Magic general manager Otis Smith told reporters that he wasn’t the one that Howard approached and asked that Van Gundy be fired.

Smith also made it known that he didn’t anticipate making a coaching change with so few games remaining in the season.

So it will be an important offseason to find out how the entire drama-filled situation plays out.

As is any case with superstar vs. coach, Van Gundy has very little chance to win this one, even though he’s made it clear that he would like to remain in Orlando. Getting rid of quite possibly the best coach in franchise history to appease a superstar who may only be in town one more year could wind up being a mistake.

Yet, ultimately, it’s easier to replace the coach than it is the guy who averages 20.6 PPG and 14.5 RPG.

If that’s the case, here’s the latest about possible replacements for Van Gundy.


Nate McMillan

McMillan could be viewed as the favorite if the job opens up and ESPN’s Marc Stein confirmed that by saying that McMillan is the “prime candidate” for the Orlando Magic.

He’s had success with both the Seattle Supersonics and Portland Trail Blazers and has always been viewed as a player’s coach.


Patrick Ewing

The New York Knicks great could make sense for the Magic, since he’s been an assistant under Van Gundy for the past five seasons. He also recently told the New York Post’s Marc Berman that he’s interested in becoming a head coach and would pursue an opening around the league sooner rather than later.


Larry Brown

Brown has made it known that he wants to get back into coaching and the Magic could be the job that he’s eyeing.

“He needs to coach like he needs oxygen,” said Villanova head coach Jay Wright.

It’s been 15 months since Brown has been on an NBA sideline, so he may aggressively pursue an opening this season.


John Calipari

Calipari will be on every team’s list looking for a head coach, but he’s made it known that he’s not interested in the NBA and has no intentions of leaving Kentucky. We will see if he says the same thing during the offseason.


Jeff Van Gundy

Van Gundy’s name has been mentioned as a possible replacement, but I just can’t see him wanting to replace his brother.