Originally written on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 11/18/14
76ers_vs_magic_066f
Stan Van Gundy still communicates with the player who was most responsible for him being successful with the Orlando Magic, and the same guy who was chiefly responsible for him being fired. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Van Gundy said he still exchanges friendly text messages with Dwight Howard. In the interview, Van Gundy discussed Howard’s status with the Los Angeles Lakers and shared two noteworthy opinions. The former Magic coach says Howard, who is coming off back surgery, does not look like the same player. He also says Howard is adjusting to being a secondary offensive option on the Lakers. “I don’t think he looks quite as explosive or as quick as he has in the past,” Van Gundy told the Times’ Ben Bolch. “Now, he’s still above almost everyone in the league at that size athletically, but he has not totally looked like himself to me.” Howard stopped playing for the Magic in April because of his back injury, and he underwent surgery for it later in the month. It wasn’t certain whether he would even be ready to play when the season began, but Howard was out there. Howard even admitted recently that he’s not at full strength, and said doctors told him it would take nine months to regain strength in his legs. Back injury aside, Van Gundy says Howard has a big mental adjustment he’s making. “It’s a big adjustment for him going from being the guy to not only being the No. 2 guy but really a No. 2 guy that really doesn’t get the ball very much at all,” Van Gundy said. “It’s a different deal and an adjustment he has to make. Those kind of things take time.” Van Gundy thinks Howard can and will make the adjustment, but he just pointed out that it takes time. Andrew Bynum also made similar comments recently when analyzing the Lakers. He said Howard would have to make the same adjustment. Van Gundy doesn’t seem to have any hard feelings toward Howard. “Dwight and my time in Orlando, I thought the relationship was good, worked well, produced results and that’s what player-coach relationships in this league should be about, are the results that they get and the results here were good, mainly because Dwight’s as good as he is. He’s a great, great player and I have a great appreciation for what he did for our teams and for me as a coach.” That’s a nice way to reflect on things, especially considering Howard is the big reason he lost his job in Orlando. But like he says, Howard is also the biggest reason he had success there. Photo credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

More international NFL games could be on the horizon

Tyler Ulis on West Virginia: We wanted to crush their spirit

Former No. 1 pick Brady Aiken undergoes Tommy John surgery

Ortiz: 'Nobody in MLB history' tested for PEDs more than me

Sam Dekker scores career high after Aaron Rodgers' challenge

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Brey Day: Notre Dame’s coach makes first Elite Eight after a vintage performance

Ronda Rousey on having kids: 'I'm an ovarian goldmine'

Pedro Martinez: Rose should be allowed in Hall of Fame

Pablo Sandoval 'cut things off at the root' with Giants

Scott Boras taking shots at Cubs' history over Kris Bryant

Kingdome debt finally paid off 15 years after demolition

An identity in flux: Harden and the collective consciousness

LeBron James makes Fortune’s list of 50 greatest world leaders

Five under-the-radar National League MVP candidates

Five bizarre NFL offseason moves that don't add up

Texas to Rick Barnes: Change your staff or you will be fired

First 'National Fantasy Football Convention' to star Tony Romo

Teams that don't deserve to win Connor McDavid Sweepstakes

How a basketball-themed art exhibit changed perceptions

Bucs admit they’ve been getting calls about Mike Glennon

The last Expo standing

NHL ships nets which have room for cameras inside posts

Toronto Raptors limping into the playoffs

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Under-the-radar NL MVP candidates

Notre Dame’s coach makes first Elite Eight

The last Expo standing

Five under-the-radar AL MVP candidates

Michigan sent recruit's GF a letter

MLB teams that could disappoint

25 years ago, the best Sweet 16 of all time was pure madness

The 2015 bad quarterback carousel

17 facts to know before the Sweet 16

Agent: Sam was horrible at veteran combine

Keeping judo ‘pure’ in Europe means keeping MMA out

The Sweet 16 should be seen as success

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.