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I had Gus Ayon pegged for the big man that would help us keep things honest inside, and Vuc as a work-in-progress, not the other way around. Nikola is a pleasant surprise.
2 years ago on The early returns on Nikola Vucevic
Great work, Nate. Give it a year, maybe years if the Lakers go on a tear and win multiple championships with Dwight a la Shaq, and I think Orlando will realize this post's exact point that most of Dwight's time in Orlando was good times. Dwight's years in Orlando where the so close to being the best we (Magic Fans) could hope for: Amazing on the court play, including a finals run and multiple deep playoff runs; tremendous altruism to the city and various charities; and many fan interactions, give-aways, meet and greets, etc.
But, the biggest problem for Dwight to overcome will be the destruction he created when he left. Specifically pushing for SVG's ultimate firing, and artificially skewing the trade market by demanding a trade to Brooklyn and refusing to sign extensions with other trade partners. The Magic front office shares a large part of this blame for the horrid position we're in now. But its impossible to over-look Dwight's hand in it, too. Even with time.
The majority of time was good, but in terms of memory, we remember
points in time stronger than whole swaths. And those points in time define the swath. the most notable point in time for
Dwight, at least in my opinion will be his awful exit. Just like having a girlfriend/boyfriend who treats you well for years, makes you really happy... then in short months begins to demand you change a lot in your life, ditch your favorite pet because he/she doesn't like it, then leaves you for your annoyingly more successful co-worker, those short months will weigh as heavy in your mind as the long years of happiness before-hand. Mainly,this happens because you cannot divulge the happiness from the event that caused that happiness to end. While Dwight DID do much more good than bad, they will necessarily be part of one era in fan's minds. Completely unfair to Dwight, yet an absolute reality is, our best singular memories of the Dwight era will be a runner up placing in 09, and some individual awards. Our worst memory is him completely turning on the organization and forcing their hands to send him to a place he'd rather be. One's definitely the stronger event, and unfortunately its the negative event.
Regardless, I wish Dwight all the best. This isn't the outcome I would have liked to see, but it happens all the time in sports. He'll be a great player in the timeline of the Orlando Magic organization, but I'm gonna be focusing on looking forward to the first true Great Magic player, not just a great NBAer who played here. We'll eventually get a team or a star who catapults us to a championship, and leaves gracefully to counter balance the Shaqs, Howards, Hardaways, T-Macs, etc. Until then, its nice to have some good times (the 99% of Dwight) to think about, even if it leads to frustration that they had to end so abruptly.
2 years, 3 months ago on Dwight Howard and the 99 percent