The Orlando Magic won't have one of the most significant figures in franchise history on hand when their 25th season gets underway in October. As Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel reports, the team has not renewed the contract of Matt Guokas, who has served as the team's television color commentator since 2004. Guokas was also the first head coach in Magic history, guiding Orlando to a 111-217 (.338) record over four seasons. Play-by-play man David Steele will return for the 2013/14 season.
According to Robbins, "[t]eam spokesman Joel Glass wouldn’t give a reason for the decision" not to renew Guokas' contract. "Matty has been and will always be a valued part of Magic history," Glass said. "We truly appreciate his commitment and service to the organization."
As a broadcaster, Guokas developed a reputation for calling games straight down the middle, without the partisanship that defines so many telecasts throughout the league. In January, Zach Lowe of Grantland called the pairing of Steele--who is similarly fair in his work on Orlando's telecasts--and Guokas "perhaps the very best on your League Pass dial."
Robbins reports that Glass said the Magic have yet to decide on a replacement for Guokas. Former Magic player Jeff Turner could be "one possibility," given that he has filled in for Guokas in the past. Radio color commentator Richie Adubato, a former Magic head coach, has also subbed for Guokas on television when necessary.