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The whole episode was a definite change in approach by Van Gundy, who is usually mum when it comes to issues dealing with his job status.
The day before the trade deadline last month, Van Gundy himself sidestepped questions about reports that Howard had asked management to jettison both himself and general manager Otis Smith as a condition for him signing a long-term contract extension.
"If they want to fire me to please somebody, fire me," Van Gundy said at the time.
Van Gundy's current contract runs through the end of the season. He has guided the Magic to at least 50 wins in each of his four previous seasons and led Orlando to the NBA Finals in 2009.
Howard and Van Gundy have seemingly always been on cordial terms, though he's sometimes been critical of Van Gundy's direct and vocal coaching style, which he has previously said can be counterproductive to team morale.
Smith and Van Gundy met during the offseason. The coach left the meeting pledging to tone down some of his intensity during games with both officials and players. So far this season he has yet to receive a technical foul.
Asked this week to address the status of Van Gundy and Smith, Martins said only that both he and Smith will undergo end-of-the-season evaluations, as do all Magic employees.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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