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If there is a rock star for the Magic, it’s not Jacque Vaughn, Jameer Nelson, or even Victor Oladipo. It’s GM Rob Hennigan.
The Mark Cuban’s and Jim Irsay’s of the world have taught us that a higher-up can often get more coverage than the actual players on the team. But we’re not watching Hennigan because of his antics. We’re watching him because he is the architect holding the blueprints. Until you actually build a house, you can’t install air conditioning or organize furniture or fill the room with pine-scented candles. We can’t assess the players or coaches until Hennigan whips up a roster that is expected to win.
His background has been documented. He shot up the positional ladders in San Antonio and Oklahoma City for eight years, two cities who have had winning filtered into their drinking water for quite some time. He’s shares a hauntingly similar background with the Thunder’s Sam Presti. And he’s the youngest GM in the league at 32.
Funny how age 30 for a GM is equivalent to about 18 for a player, and 30 for a player is somewhat at or beyond his prime.
Regardless, there wasn’t a lot of questioning about the hire when it happened. Magic fans seemed to want a fresh start in every way, so a young, vibrant triggerman appeared to be much needed.
But this is neither a defense nor an attack on the man. As we draw near the end of the season and our eyes are glazed over with the prospects of the future, we must make a logical assessment of the Magic’s rock star. And always keep in mind the question, “Could anyone else have made more out of the same variables?”