For the past five years the Orlando Magic surely had their share of successful days under the Dwight Howard-Stan Van Gundy era. While Van Gundy was head coach, he was able to get his team to win approximately 65.4-percent of the games they played from 2007-12.
Generally speaking, fans want their teams to win; for most Magic fans, however, it will be an uncomfortable road ahead. Or for the optimistic Magic fan, the franchise will see an invigorating change in the future, now that the tables have turned for the organization in every facet possible.
Let's be honest here though, and I apologize in advance for being so blunt to any Orlando fan: don't expect this team to clinch a seed in the postseason, at least for this year and who knows, maybe next year?
As CEO Alex Martins said earlier during Media day, the franchise is not in a rebuild mode, but rather it's in a transient period.
In fact, newly appointed head coach Jacque Vaughn said he wouldn't be disappointed if the team didn't make the playoffs this season.
"I think it will be a disappointment if I don’t see my guys improve." Vaughn said. "I’m not going to put a number on games, signifying us making the playoffs, I don’t know how many games are going to take to make the playoffs. I don’t know how many games we’re going to win. For me, the culture is built around doing your job every single day to get better."
If you want to enjoy the games, your best bet is to focus on a specific player's performance and observe how he improves over a stretch of games, or even from previous seasons.
"We’re not sure who is going to be our leading scorer." Vaughn said.
Uncertainty lingers in the air as Magic fans will be seeing a new group of guys who haven't played together in set rotations or interacted from a personal standpoint. We've only seen snippets of the newcomers like rookie power forward Andrew Nicholson and rookie center Kyle O'Quinn play for Orlando's frontcourt during the summer league - and of course, we've already seen last season's squad of veterans such as Jameer Nelson, J.J. Redick, Hedo Turkoglu or Glen Davis play in unison.
Hennigan, however, isn't worried at all for what's to come in this new chapter for the Magic.
"Well, I think it’s a team our fans are going to root for because they’re going to play the right way: they’re going to play unselfish, they’re going to compete with everything they’ve got, and it’s going to be from a team effort. I think that’s sometimes refreshing." Orlando Magic GM Rob Hennigan said at Media Day. "I think everybody can expect a lot of adventure and a lot of fun in the days ahead. We’re in a position here where there’s some unknown and there’s a lot of opportunity for our guys to earn minutes and create a niche for themselves. I think it’s a time where the team is taking its shape and taking its form. We’ll see how it works."