WDBO Sports Director Scott Anez has seen, or listened to, every Orlando Magic game ever played! A local boy who graduated from Lake Brantley High School and UCF, Scott began his career by covering the Magic's inaugural season in 1989 and he is known as the Voice of the Magic Fan in Orlando. This is Scott's 20th season hosting FM 96.5 and AM 580 Newstalk WDBO Inside Magic, the highest rated sports talk show in Orlando. He also serves as Broadcast Host for the Orlando Magic Radio Network. Scott shares his unique take on what's happening at Two Magic Place and beyond with ANEZ SEZ. Read more of Scott's previous blogs at the Anez Sez archive or at http://580wdbo.com.
Posted by Scott Anez, Friday, December 16, 2011, 11:00 AM
It’s Been A Great Ride
Considering the recent lockout, I had my doubts whether we’d get here.
But here we are.
Alas, I begin my 20th season of hosting Inside Magic.
20 years. Ya get outta school, start a career, get married, have a family and before ya know it, you’re known as the ‘old guy’. How does that happen?
Amazing how time just absolutely flies.
Through these 20 years of doing the show, I have seen some really good basketball…some not so good basketball…and some hideous basketball. Same deal with the show…Some good, some bad, some forgetful.
So, I’ve come up with my TOP 5 Moments in Inside Magic history:
5…Inside Magic, Draft Night, 1993.
Then-GM Pat Williams had shocked the world by gaining the number one pick for the second straight season. Who would we take to pair with Shaq? Chris Webber, out of Michigan, was the known entity. Webber was a highly visible guy, part of Michigan’s infamous Fab Five. The conventional wisdom was that the Magic would take Webber with their pick. However, Memphis State’s Penny Hardaway had been brought in for a third interview the day before the draft. Doing Inside Magic with Dennis Neumann, David Steele and Jack Givens on the arena floor that night, a huge crowd was frothing at the mouth. They wanted Webber! A huge cheer went up when the Magic took Webber number one. However, we had gotten word that that there could be a trade. There was: Webber to Golden State for Penny and three future first’s. The crowd went nuts! Pat Williams came out on stage with a life-size Penny Haradway cutout that was being pelted with coins. If folks could have thrown eggs and tomatoes, I am sure they would have. What a night!
4…Inside Magic, live from Alllentown, Pa.
It was the winter of 1996. I was actually back in Orlando, thankfully. Because of the Blizzard of ’96, the Magic team plane was diverted to Allentown, Pa. for three whole days. The Magic’s bunk-mates? Sesame Street On Ice and Marilyn Manson. As we went on the air that night, we decided to call the hotel restaurant to see if we could get in contact with anybody. We got in touch with our buddy David Steele, who then passed the phone around the table. Shaq, Nick, Penny all told amusing stories about their stay in Allentown. I even talked with then-assistant Richie Adubato about a fire-alarm incident the night before, when, as Richie said, he’s going down the stairs with Cookie Monster on his right and Marilyn Manson on his left. Priceless.
3…The first day Shaquille O’Neal arrived in Orlando, we did an hour-long Inside Magic together.
It was the summer of 1992. Shaq had just signed a six-year $42 million deal. Matter of fact, he bumped his head on an over-head speaker as he made his way into the studio. There were two things that struck me right away about the kid. I had never seen a human being that massive. Number two, his smile was electric and inviting. While on the air, Shaq even scored his first endorsement from a local desk company. After the show, Shaq told me, “I like you.” Of course, times changed—and so did Shaq. I have had my differences in opinion with the Diesel over the years, but there’s no denying his impact upon Orlando and the NBA.
2…Penny Hardaway’s exit interview on Inside Magic back in 1999.
Believe it or not, I still have folks ask me about that show. At that point, Penny’s star was fading. Fair or not, many in Magic Nation had blamed Penny for leading a mutiny against Brian Hill in the winter of 1997. Over the course of his next two years, Penny not only had knee issues, but it became painfully obvious that he was just not capable of taking over a leadership role with the club. On the night of the show, Penny was just coming off a dismal performance in a first-round series loss to the Sixers. He demanded a trade out of Orlando. I talked to Penny, commercial-free, for 49 minutes! He just let loose—on the organization, the media, the city of Orlando. It was almost as if Penny was on the couch talking with Dr. Scott. I am convinced that that interview was the final straw that led to his eventual trade to Phoenix for Pat Garrity, Danny Manning and two first-round picks.
1…“I want to be the best player in the history of the game.”
It was the summer of 2004. The Magic had just come off a nightmarish 21-win season. Doc Rivers had been fired early in the year. The organization was in dire need of a pick-me-up. We got it in the form of the number-one pick in the draft that year. We had a countdown on Inside Magic late in the season, with the motto, “Five More to Okafor…Four More to Okafor…Three more to Okafor…” Emeka Okafor, out of UCONN, was the known entity. He had just come off a national championship. Yet, here was this other kid no one outside of Atlanta was talking about. He was a high school senior out of Southwest Christian Academy. Right before the draft, I talked with him on Inside Magic and he told me that he “wants to be the best player in the history of the game.” Needless to say, John Weisbrod, Otis Smith and Dave Twardzik made the right call that summer, choosing Dwight Howard with the number one overall pick.
Anez Sez is solely the opinion of Scott Anez and does not reflect the views of the Orlando Magic or the NBA.
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