SBD/June 22, 2012/Franchises

Magic Introduce Rob Hennigan As NBA's Youngest GM

Hennigan said he will begin his search for a head coach "immediately"
The Magic on Thursday announced Rob Hennigan as the team’s new GM and he came across at his press conference as “a disciplined, analytical 30-year-old who pledges not to rush into decisions or allow emotion to cloud his judgment,” according to Josh Robbins of the ORLANDO SENTINEL. Hennigan said, "Every decision we make will be well thought-out, will be well-planned. And, ideally, each decision will set up the next decision, which will set up the next decision and so on." Hennigan said he will begin his search for a head coach "immediately" and will reach out to C Dwight Howard and his agent "in the very near and foreseeable future" regarding Howard's future with the team. Concerning the Magic's head coaching vacancy, Hennigan said that he “will seek a coach who prepares well, communicates effectively and embraces the challenge of developing players.” Hennigan "would not put a timetable on the search or say how many candidates he plans to contact” (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 6/22). In Orlando, Mike Bianchi writes, “I'm not saying Rob Hennigan, the Orlando's Magic's baby-faced new general manager, is young, but my sources say he accepted the job because he fell in love with the new Amway Center's Kid's Zone.” Hennigan: "Age is what it is. You're judged on the quality of your work, the way you treat people and the way you handle your business." Bianchi writes it would be “an understatement to say the hiring of Hennigan as the youngest GM in the league is a bold move by Magic CEO Alex Martins.” Still, Bianchi gives Martins an "A" for "Audacity" in making his “first major hire” as the Magic's CEO (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 6/22). Martins said, "You read Rob’s resume, it doesn’t have his age on it and his experience and what he’s done in the organizations that he’s been with far exceed his years, and clearly that’s what’s important” (NBA TV, 6/21).

WHIZ KID: Also in Orlando, Brian Schmitz noted Hennigan during the press conference used words like “organic” and “analytics” and “process-based” and “systematic” and “synergy.” Schmitz: “The Magic have never had a GM like this. And maybe it’s time. … The likable Hennigan reminds me a little of John Gabriel, a super-smart guy who talked like a CEO and even held his vest close to his vest” (ORLANDOSENTINEL.com, 6/21). Hennigan previously worked for the Spurs and the Thunder, and L.A. Times columnist Bill Plaschke said they “are the two most forward-thinking organizations in the modern NBA, they’ve embraced the way it works, great breeding ground." Dallas Morning News columnist Tim Cowlishaw said he was “buying” Hennigan’s hire because “this is the right kind of move. This guy has learned in the two systems where they get it right” (“Around The Horn,” ESPN, 6/21).
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