Sportress of Blogitude

Stan Van Gundy-Dwight Howard interview is the most awkward thing ever (video)

Sweet Fancy Moses! Reports began surfacing out of Orlando earlier Thursday that Stan Van Gundy came right out and said that he previously had been told that Magic superstar Dwight Howard had in fact requested that he be terminated from his position as the team’s head coach.

Via the Orlando Sentinel (by way of TBJ):

“I know he has,” Van Gundy told reporters after the Magic completed their shootaround. “That’s just the way it is. Again, I’ve been dealing with that all year. It’s not anything real bothersome. You go out and do your job.”

Asked if it makes it harder to coach given that he thinks Howard is not committed to him, Van Gundy responded, “It’s not a matter of being committed to me. It’s a matter of being committed to the team and trying to do everything you can to help the team win games. That’s all I’m concerned with. As far as the other stuff, I don’t think that matters. I don’t need love and support here at my job. I’ll turn to my family for that. I don’t need these guys giving me hugs and pats on the back.”

Asked how he knows Howard asked for his dismissal, Van Gundy said, “I was told it was true by people in our management right from the top.”

Casually sipping on his Diet Pepsi, Van Gundy lays it all out about how Howard has more or less thrown him under the bus at some point in the past and if it wasn’t awkward enough watching Van Gundy basically say his career seemingly hangs in the balance of the whims of a temperamental, borderline narcissistic individual, lo and behold, who should saunter in and wrap their arm around the beleaguered coach than Dwight Howard himself. Hoo boy.

Cringe-worthy, want-to-look-away-but-cannot video follows.

Howard, initially unaware what kind of mess he just stepped in by walking in on the interview, but upon realizing what was going on and after Van Gundy fled the scene, later said (referencing an ESPN report denying what Van Gundy just said):

When Howard was asked point blank if he asked to have Van Gundy fired, Howard responded, “What did I just say yesterday? I know you guys watch ESPN.”

Later, Howard said: “Whatever happens at the end of the season is not under my control. I am a player for the Magic. I am not the GM. I am not [team owner] Rich DeVos. I am not [CEO] Alex Martins. So that’s not my job. So you guys should stop with every other week it’s trying to find something, because there’s nothing. There’s nothing. I haven’t said anything to anybody about anything. Our main concern is winning. So all the other stuff should stop.”

Ha. Yeah, right. Fair or unfair, as a consequence of the manner in which he has conducted himself throughout the entire, prolonged contract situation, Dwight Howard has absolutely zero credibility and anything that comes out of his mouth should be framed within the uncomfortable, toxic environment he has created in Orlando. What tangled webs we weave.