Flip-flops and invitations.
Billy Donovan has reportedly been having second thoughts regarding the coaching job he was offered in the Orlando Magic. It is highly likely that he will be returning to the Gators to coach once again; unless he is rejected by the Gators, or he pulls a Kobe Bryant in the next couple of days regarding his decision. Billy Donovan was set to sign a 7-year deal with the Florida Gators worth $3.5 million annually before he decided to jump ship to the NBA; where he would have been getting a little more money in total, a whopper more money per annum, and a shorter term of a contract. Donovan has yet to sign the contract with Orlando; thus, if he is resourceful and desperate enough, he can still find a way to go back to the Gators if they are still willing to take him back as their head coach.
Let's analyze Billy's decision shall we.
If Billy Donovan was to turn his back on the Magic and go back to the Gators, what would he lose? One thing I'm sure of is a whole lot of money. He will be losing $2 million a year if he chose to sign with the Gators instead. Another thing, signing 7 years with the Gators is like signing a maximum contract as an NBA player. That never really works out in the end. 7 years is just too long for anyone to bear. If he makes it to the NCAA Final Four for all the 7 years of his contract, well and good. One thing that shouldn't be forgotten though is human nature: People always want more. Billy Donovan might make the Final Four for the next 3 years, but the fans, students, alumni, and the school association would grow tired and weary of seeing continuous Final Four disappointments no matter how impressive Donovan is with the team. If he can't win a championship even after making it for 3 or 4 straight seasons in the Final Four, take him out. The only secure way for Donovan to remain fresh is to either win a few more NCAA Titles, or flop back and forth between not making the tournament at all and sky-rocketing the next season to the NCAA Finals. A lot of NBA coaches have already experienced this travesty of not being able to provide enough for the franchise no matter how impressive they have been as coach. I'll give you two examples: Rick Carlisle and Byron Scott. Rick Carlisle sky-rocketed the Detroit Pistons from lottery team to contending in the Eastern Conference Finals; two years later, he was fired. Byron Scott led the New Jersey Nets to the NBA Finals twice along with consecutive appearances in the playoffs. Booted. I understand franchises must always aim for championships; but I'm just trying to make the point that the 7 year contract of Donovan with the Gators is too long. The 5 year contract with the Magic on the other hand gives him much more options and makes for a more flexible future.
Will he be able to excel as an NBA coach? History says no, but that's why it's a multi-year contract; and I think the fact must be understood that Donovan made history this year for winning consecutive NCAA Championships. However, the huge difference between coaching college and coaching NBA must not be neglected. I think almost everybody has already stated the fact that coaching a bunch of runny-nosed kids who shut up and do as they're told is a breeze compared to coaching multi-million dollar players with attitude problems. Truth be told, it is. I would take coaching Joakim Noah and Corey Brewer any day than coaching Allen Iverson or Rasheed Wallace. However, everyone seems to have forgotten to actually look at the players being offered to Donovan in the first place. The face of the franchise alone, Dwight Howard, is the exact opposite of an un-coach-able player. He just smiles, says please, and hardly gets angry at all. Come on, he is a kid; it may not look it, but that's why they call him the man-child. Billy Donovan can just give him a lollipop and he'd be off frolicking in the court blocking shots and ripping boards. I was talking about achieving but non-championship coaches earlier in Byron Scott and Rick Carlisle; but what about Billy Donovan in the future? Nobody really knows until Billy Donovan gives it a shot. He has a young, athletic, but momentarily incomplete team, along with an extremely dominant big man in the making; let's see how Mr. College-Ball fares with this bunch of multi-million dollar players.
Besides, if the Magic don't like him: fire him. He'd still be getting much more money than he would have had in the Gators for a totally less amount of time. And college-ball would always have their arms open to a coach with a resume that says "2 consecutive NCAA Championships". It's the best scenario I could think of for Coach Billy Donovan.
Billy Donovan should put lipstick on his forehead; so he can make up his mind.
Hope you like college Billy, because you're dead to the NBA [100% Injury Rate]
Report: Donovan wants to return to Gators [Yahoo! Sports]
Paper Says Magic Will Allow Donovan to Return to Florida [The Fanhouse]
Monday, June 4
Flip-flops and invitations.