The Orlando Magic, who failed to qualify for the playoffs this year in the NBA, announced on Saturday that they had separated from their coach Steve Clifford by mutual agreement. In three seasons in Florida, the 59-year-old technician has a record of 96 wins against 131 losses. It’s a new page that is turning to the Magic, which had already separated from its trio of major players (Evan Fournier, Nikola Vucevic and Aaron Gordon) during the last trade deadline in March.
“We would like to thank Steve for his contributions to the Orlando Magic, said club president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman. We appreciate the many sacrifices he has made as a coach, but the new path we want to take does not align with his goals. «
During his first regular season on the Florida bench, in 2018-19, Clifford had allowed the Magic to register 1 more victories than in the previous season, which had resulted in a return to the play-offs for the Floridians, who had not played them since 2012. He had again led the team in the play-offs in 2020 but had still failed to pass the first round.
Prior to coaching the Magic, Clifford was at the helm of the Charlotte Hornets for five seasons. In total, his record in the NBA is 292 wins against 345 losses in eight seasons. Orlando is the third team looking for a new coach with Boston, where Brad Stevens left his post to take the helm of basketball operations, and Portland, which has just split from Terry Stotts.