Dear Scott Skiles,
After much thought and careful consideration, I and I alone, have come to the conclusion that you were right about not being the right head coach for the Orlando Magic. I am a loyal fan, almost to a fault at times it seems. So when you were hired by the Orlando Magic to be the head coach, I reluctantly gave you the benefit of the doubt. I knew your history, a head coach who in the first couple of seasons improves his teams, but after that, it’s typically a bumpy road. However, I forced myself to believe that in Orlando, where you spent the most time as a player in your career, things would be different. Although my gut told me we hired the wrong man for the job and that this could only end badly, I still walked into it with an open mind as I figured that would be the best thing to do. This past week you proved me wrong, my loyalty had failed me, but I can’t thank you enough for that.
I assume when you stepped down as the Head Coach of the Orlando Magic you weren’t expecting many thank you letters? You more than likely predicted you would be blasted by Magic fans for your decision. Looks like we both were wrong this week. Don’t take this the wrong way, you’re not a bad coach by any means, you’re just not special. You know how to preach and teach defense well, and how to show guys how to work hard day in and day out. It’s not your fault that as a head coach you just didn’t have the IT factor. You’ve had some good seasons, and some down ones as well. You were fired by the Suns, Bulls & parted ways aka fired by the Bucks. At some point that trend would of likely continued with the Magic, you know it, and I know it. You would have improved the team, no question, as you did in your first season. But at some point the improving would stop, and the team would become stagnant and you would be to blame.
Although I don’t condone you resigning like you did, as it’s a coward like move in my opinion. I still applaud you for your decision, rather than make the fans go through the Scott Skiles cycle, you ended it early. Thanks to you, the Orlando Magic have agreed in principle to a deal with new Head Coach Frank Vogel. Frank has a proven resume; in Indianapolis he made them a top 10 in defensive efficiency every season. His record in IND was 250-181 with a playoff record of 31-30. Sure, his playoff record leaves room for improvement, but he had his team one win away from knocking off the #1 seed Toronto Raptors. This, after seeing David West walk in FA and trading away Roy Hibbert.
By no means is Frank perfect, Scott, you know just as well as anyone that nobody is perfect. But he gives the Magic real hope. He’s a guy FA’s will want to play for, he will continue to grow the defensive culture that you started and he will bust his tail in an attempt finish the job you resigned from. The job of turning the Orlando Magic into NBA Champions is now Frank’s to complete. As an Orlando Magic fan, I am proud to say I have 100% faith that Frank can make that happen as well as anybody could. Of course just Frank alone isn’t enough, but it’s a great start because he has IT. He will also not butt heads with management and will have no problem being the leader the players need. I will go on record to say this will be the best move the Magic make all off-season. Even with the hopeful signing of a big name free agent and possibly a trade or two, Frank Vogel’s hiring will still be more important.
Thank you again Scott for stepping down, as your decision to resign from your job was the only key that could of opened the door to the new Frank Vogel led Orlando Magic. I wish you luck in whatever you decide to do next, hell, I owe you one.
A Lifelong Orlando Magic Fan
I’ll let Frank see you to the exit Scott.
Credit: Dan Hamilton – USA TODAY Sports