Magic fans waited a long time to find out who their new head coach would be. And they wasted little time reacting to the hiring once it was finally made.
Steve Clifford was named the Magic’s coach on Wednesday and reaction to the news on Twitter was mixed. Well, mixed may be a little generous. By my estimation, about 70 percent of tweets questioned or opposed the hiring. The main gripes being 1) the Magic would be better off with a younger coach better suited for a rebuild and player development, 2) Steve Clifford is pretty damn similar to Frank Vogel, who the Magic fired a few short weeks ago, and 3) Clifford didn’t have great consistency or success with the Hornets, who fired him a few short weeks ago.
So it seems an ideal time for the latest installment of our “Twitter reacts...” series. We’ve done this a few times of late for significant moments for the Magic: like when Twitter reacted to the Magic getting the sixth pick in the NBA Draft and when Twitter reacted to Frank Vogel getting fired and when Twitter reacted to Elfrid Payton’s return to Orlando.
Below are some of the better tweets that Twitter had to offer, both good and bad, about Steve Clifford and the Magic. If you come across any others worth highlighting, feel free to share them below.
In his first season as Hornets coach, Clifford led a team that won 21 games the previous season to a 22-win improvement and a 7-seed in the East.— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) May 30, 2018
The Magic are coming off a 25-57 season, their 4th season with 25-or-fewer wins since 2012-13. https://t.co/TsSerTg1rz
When Steve Clifford runs into Frank Vogel emptying out his new office pic.twitter.com/9hNWNEZQ1j— SMK (@smkerin) May 30, 2018
The Magic hiring Steve Clifford can only mean one thing. It’s time to come home. pic.twitter.com/mftVtr0ArM— Sean Highkin (@highkin) May 30, 2018
i wanted nurse, but i think this hire is fine. his teams tend to execute well, try hard and he seems to get buy-in from everyone on the roster. offensive scheme aside those were all big issues under vogel https://t.co/p4GI5mM0JE— ricky scricca ☕️ (@scricca1) May 30, 2018
Steve Clifford reiterated he's recovered fully from the severe headaches brought on by lack of sleep. The Magic asked him extensively about his health during the interview process, and the Magic's team doctors also spoke with Clifford's doctors before the hire was made.— Josh Robbins (@JoshuaBRobbins) May 30, 2018
“When you guys don’t run back on defense, I’ll still get headaches”. Lighthearted moment from Clifford about his health, doesn’t foresee his health/sleep being a problem.— Orlando Pinstriped Post (@OPPMagicBlog) May 30, 2018
I was hoping the Magic would take a leap and hire an up and comer, but I like the Steve Clifford hire. He's a good coach, knows Orlando and should be there for a while. The Magic need stability more than anything as they keep moving this rebuild forward.— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) May 30, 2018
"Steve Clifford is the one guy that would take this job after looking at the dumpster fire Alex Martins has created over the past near decade... Plus he's been here before and checks our misplaced nostalgia box" pic.twitter.com/b69PplMxgZ— Chris (@OrlandoCountySC) May 30, 2018
The “so you’ve hired Steve Clifford” starter pack pic.twitter.com/xGnvJqTaF9— Dylan Jackson (@JaxonNBA) May 30, 2018
The Orlando Magic: "Look at us we hired Steve Clifford!"— Noam Schiller (@noamschiller) May 30, 2018
NBA Twitter, clearly preoccupied: "uh huh that's nice sweetie"
Steve Clifford is returning to Orlando, this time as head coach. He brings some much needed stability to the position; and, with his track record of being a Dwight-whisperer, it leads me to believe Orlando will draft a pillar big man to help Clifford establish a defense identity. pic.twitter.com/Gr6BEHoc14— #PaperMario World (@PaperMarioWorld) May 30, 2018
*looks at twitter*— Matt (@MattIsCabin) May 30, 2018
*sees Steve Clifford hire* pic.twitter.com/9Mt9LlG3eS
Super happy to see Steve Clifford with a job again. I think very highly of him as a coach. Magic made what should be a good hire.— Chris Barnewall (@ChrisBarnewall) May 30, 2018
I like Steve Clifford, but going from Vogel to Clifford seems about as lateral a move as you can have.— Joe Scarchilli (@joescarc) May 30, 2018
Steve Clifford couldn't coach Charlotte to the Playoffs, who have far better talent than Orlando, but Orlando hires him when the other options they were contemplating were mostly better? He must've been cheaper.— 1 (@TacosNSlurpees) May 30, 2018
Seeing people knock hiring Steve Clifford because of his player development. I don’t get that…— Orlando Magic Daily (@OMagicDaily) May 30, 2018
A lot of players go a whole lot better under Clifford. Including Kemba Walker. Who kind of reminds me of a point guard in this draft...
i have no reaction to hiring Steve Clifford other than "ok"— Sad Vogel (@cb1115) May 30, 2018
Just so I have this figured out. The @OrlandoMagic Took 50 days in their coaching search and they ended up with a guy in Steve Clifford that had three losing seasons in five years in Charlotte and is a career 18 games below 500 as an NBA head coach... this is officially a joke.— Ryan Green (@RyanGreenGN) May 30, 2018
Wow Steve Clifford taking us back in time to point out the Orlando Magic were the ones who began the 4 out 1 in strategy we see used by EVERYONE in today’s NBA... the Orlando Magic— gporter123 (@PorterMagic) May 30, 2018
The Magic hire Steve Clifford as their new Head Coach! (via Woj) pic.twitter.com/u9IbJCdzvT— #PaperMario World (@PaperMarioWorld) May 30, 2018
Steve Clifford helped turn around a team that went 21-61, to the playoffs the following season. He helped develop Kemba into a top point guard. He can turn Orlando around, I like this hire. A proven commodity that can turn struggling franchises and propel them into the postseason— Ryan Doyle (@RDoyle27) May 30, 2018
If Frank Vogel couldn't turn this team around, Steve Clifford sure as hell isn't going to. Couple years down the line maybe, but as of right now we needed a young coach that could grow with this team.... #MagicNation— Magic Nation™ (@MagicNationORL) May 31, 2018
steve clifford seriously looks like thanos pic.twitter.com/CTd6j6g7hv— Idk what this account is anymore (@AnotherUNCFan) May 30, 2018
We sacked Vogel for Steve Clifford?— mr haricot vert (@8629Fissile) May 30, 2018
I like Steve Clifford, I’m a bit surprised the Magic didn’t go after the young coach but I’m not mad either.— The Lando (@TheLando__) May 30, 2018
It’s foolish to overreact period when none of us can predict the results.
Steve is a smart coach, and it’s nice to have a piece back from the Dwight days.
Dwight Howard calling Steve Clifford's phone nonstop right now... pic.twitter.com/LR7hqodgut— Orlando Pinstriped Post (@OPPMagicBlog) May 30, 2018