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Former Pistons Lindsey Hunter, Michael Curry finalists for Orlando head coaching gig

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Nelson Chenault-US PRESSWIRE
Nelson Chenault-US PRESSWIRE

I didn't know whether to believe it at first. The pain from the 2008-09 season is still too fresh in my mind. The bizarre suits, the ranking a player's performance based on a point system. ... I want to forget but I'll always remember.

And now former Detroit Pistons coach Michael Curry is close to getting his official second chance as he is one of three finalists for the head coaching vacancy in Orlando. He joins fellow former Piston Lindsey Hunter and Jacque Vaughn, who is supposedly the favorite.

All I can say from afar is that if this is how the coaching search turns out under new general manager Rob Henigan then if I were a Magic fan I would be terrified of how the Dwight Howard trade ends. And it could signal that recently departed Detroit executive Scott Perry has more influence in the coaching decision than I would have imagined.

Of course, maybe I'm not being fair. Maybe Curry has grown sufficiently in the ensuing years to be ready for another head coaching gig. But his one year tenure was a debacle of epic proportions.

Curry spent one season as an assistant coach under Flip Saunders when he was abruptly given the reigns of a franchise coming off of its third straight loss in the Eastern Conference finals. Joe Dumars seemed desperate for a voice in the huddle that his collection of vets would respect and follow but it was quickly apparent that Curry was in over his head.

He wasn't helped, of course, when star point guard was traded two games into the season for Allen Iverson. It was a trade that created a void at point guard and a glut at shooting guard and the locker room seemed to fracture as Curry didn't have a strong enough voice to balance the talent and egos of Iverson and incumbent shooting guard Richard Hamilton. The Pistons eventually finished with a 39-43 record, limped into the playoffs and got crushed in the first round.

Curry eventually rebounded as an assistant head coach for Doug Collins, another former Pistons coach himself.

Hunter has slid more subtly into the coaching ranks, first as a player/coach in Chicago and more recently as a scout and player development coach for the Phoenix Suns.

It might all be moot, however, as according to reports the leading candidate is Vaughn, who has served as an assistant in the coaching factory of San Antonio and has personal ties to Henigan from his Spurs days.

So there you have it. The person with the most coaching experience in this search is Michael Curry. Michael. Curry. I don't know Magic fans, if you're out there .... what do you think?