Nikola Vucevic.

Nikola Vucevic admits surprise at Scott Skiles' departure

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Over the past few weeks, there have been a raft of head coaching departures in the NBA.

Some, like Byron Scott at the Lakers and George Karl in Sacramento, had long been mooted, while others such as Frank Vogel's Indiana Pacers departure caught people off guard.

Of the nine outgoing head coaches since April 14, however, perhaps the most surprising was Scott Skiles' resignation as the head coach of the Orlando Magic on May 12. Speaking this weekend, the Magic's Nikola Vucevic has spelt out his surprise on hearing Friday's news:

"“I was surprised, like everyone else,” Vucevic explained to the Orlando Sentinal. “I don’t think anybody expected it to happen, but it was his decision. 

"You just have to accept it and move on. It’s tough because I thought Coach was really doing something good for us. We were heading in the right direction. We finished up the season the right way.

"We had some good wins at the end. We were playing much better. He established a good foundation for the future. So it would’ve been good for us to kind of keep going with him, because he’s a good coach and also it’s important to have a certain continuity."

Orlando Magic v Dallas Mavericks

Skiles' resignation came after a season in which, at one point, the Magic had been challenging for a playoff spot in the East.

Although they eventually ended up with a 35-47 record, it was the first time the franchise had won more than 25 games in a season since the 2011-12 campaign. he had led the Magic to a 

There were, though, rumours of unrest between Skiles and Magic general manager Rob Hennigan.

Nevertheless, unlike many other coaches who lost their job over the past month, it is clear Skiles hadn't lost the locker room before parting ways with his employer.

Aaron Gordon
Orlando Magic
Southeast Division
Eastern Conference
Nikola Vucevic

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