Daly reconsiders, takes Magic job Former Pistons coach gets 3-year, $15 million deal

June 02, 1997|By ORLANDO SENTINEL

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Spurned in an earlier attempt to hire Chuck Daly as coach, the Orlando Magic finally persuaded him to take the job after talks were renewed this past weekend, NBA sources confirmed yesterday.

Daly, 66, is prepared to sign a three-year deal worth about $15 million. His hiring could be announced as early as today, unidentified sources said.

Magic general manager John Gabriel would not confirm Daly's hiring. Reached at his office yesterday, Gabriel said: "We have had discussions, but no details have been finalized."

Richie Adubato was told yesterday that he would not keep the head coaching job. "I don't know what I'm going to do. This is a job I wanted," said Adubato, the assistant coach who became head coach when Brian Hill was fired Feb. 18.

Daly, winner of two NBA titles with the Detroit Pistons, had rejected an informal offer from Gabriel on May 19.

According to a source close to the situation, Daly had been pressed to make a quick decision at that time. But having just completed a lengthy season as an NBA analyst for the Turner Network, Daly said then: "We just had a good discussion about it. It's a wonderful job, a great area. But for me, it's not going to be there. Just one of those things."

The Magic had tried to lure Chicago Bulls coach Phil Jackson with a five-year, $30 million offer. However, Jackson and his agent, Todd Musburger, said no decision would be made until after the playoffs are completed.

According to NBA sources, Daly was approached by the Magic again over the weekend and asked to reconsider their offer to coach the team.

"Chuck never gave a definite no the first time," a source close to the situation said. "The timing just wasn't right at first."

Daly has a career record of 564-379 in 12 seasons as an NBA coach. He won back-to-back NBA titles with the Pistons in 1989 and 1990. He also was coach of the first U.S. Olympic Dream Team, which he guided to the gold medal at the 1992 Summer Games in Barcelona, Spain.

In his most recent NBA stint, Daly coached the New Jersey Nets from 1992-94, winning 43 and 45 games, respectively, en route to two third-place finishes in the Atlantic Division before he quit.

Pub Date: 6/02/97

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