Coach Vogel Unfortunately Already Owns a Team Record

Frank Vogel is going to be a great coach for this franchise. It’s just too bad his reign as the 12th Head Coach in Orlando Magic team history is off to a very sluggish start. The 43-year-old is already the owner of a not-so-great record: Worst points differential 2 games into a Magic coaching career.

With the 12-point loss in the home opener against Miami, and the 26-point loss in Detroit, that puts this ’16-’17 Magic squad at a -38 point differential two games in.

That dethrones Johnny Davis. Davis took over for Doc Rivers after he got canned with a 1-10 record to begin the eye-gouging 2003-2004 season. After two games and losses in the head chair, Davis’ team was at a -37 point differential.

So it’s not just you if you feel like this Magic season has oddly gotten off to a disastrous 0-2 beginning.

Rewinding a bit, the 12-point opening defeat for the Frank Vogel era was almost the worst for a Magic head coaching debut. Doc Rivers’ 1999-2000 Heart ‘N Hustle group lost by 14 points in Charlotte to open that campaign. That’s the worst point differential so far for a new Orlando coach.

Looking ahead, the Magic are in Cleveland on Saturday. I’m going to be pretty honest, it would take a minor miracle to beat the defending champion Cavaliers. The Magic are staring at an 0-3 start. Others to begin their Magic coaching career with that record and the point differentials:

  • 2003-2004: Johnny Davis at -48 point differential (was 0-9 before first coaching win)
  • 2015-2016: Scott Skiles at -9 point differential (won fourth game)

 

That’s it. In Brian Hill’s second head coaching stint in the 2005-2006 regular season, the Magic were also 0-3. That point differential was -29 before that squad won their 1st game in their fourth contest of that campaign. B-Hill’s team lost that first contest on November 2, 2005 at home against the Indiana Pacers by 12 points, tying Vogel’s opening night defeat. But since we’re not talking about B-Hill’s first stint as coach, the ’05-’06 days can’t technically be counted in this discussion.

Here’s to this current Magic bunch getting out of this funk very fast.

Orlando Exercises Team Options on Hezonja, Gordon, and Payton

The Orlando Magic announced on Tuesday that they have exercised their 3rd-year team option on Mario Hezonja, as well as exercising 4th-year team options on Aaron Gordon and Elfrid Payton. All three players are now signed through the 2017-2018 season. This shouldn’t surprise anyone, but still important news.

The 21-year-old Gordon played in 78 games – starting 37 of them – last season with the Magic, averaging 9.2 ppg, 6.5 rpg, and 1.6 apg. The 6’9″ forward will be making about $4.35 million in ’16-’17, and about $5.5 million in ’17-’18. Originally selected #4 in the 2014 NBA Draft by the Magic, Aaron has appeared in 125 career regular season games (45 starts) with averages of 7.7 ppg, 5.4 rpg, and 1.3 apg.

The 21-year-old Hezonja played in 79 games – starting 9 of them – in his rookie campaign, averaging 6.1 ppg, 2.2 rpg, and 1.4 apg. The 6’8″ wing will be making about $3.9 million in ’16-’17, and about four million dollars in ’17-’18. Mario was chosen 5th overall in the 2015 Draft by the Magic.

The 22-year-old Payton played in 73 games – starting 69 of them – last season with the Magic, averaging 10.7 ppg, a team-high 6.4 apg, 3.6 rpg, and 1.2 spg. The 6’4″ point guard will be making about $2.6 million in ’16-’17, and about $3.3 million in ’17-’18. Originally selected 10th in the 2014 NBA Draft by Philadelphia, Payton was acquired that same evening by Orlando in exchange for Dario Saric, a 1st round pick, and a 2nd round pick. Elfrid has appeared in 155 career regular season games (132 starts), averaging 9.7 ppg, 6.5 apg, 3.9 rpg, and 1.5 spg. EP was named to the 2014-2015 NBA All-Rookie First Team, and finished fourth in voting for Rookie of the Year.

No word yet on offseason acquisition C.J. Wilcox. The Magic have until October 31st to make a decision on his team option.