He just wanted to be a head coach again. It wasn’t really about wanting to get back to college for him and he didn’t seem like he was that close to landing a head coaching gig in the NBA at the time. If he would have been offered the Magic job at the same time as ours when he came here I’m guessing he would have taken it based on things he’s said before.
That said, pure speculation, but I doubt he would leave us for that job. The Magic are a mess and with the type of competitor Sampson is I think he has to want to take this program even further now, especially with all the momentum he has going. If his name was in the mix for something like Milwaukee or Charlotte (NC is home for him and his wife), I would be worried. Then again, if his name is out there as a potential front runner it’s tough to piece together what exactly that means but it’s obviously not great to hear.
If Sampson bounces the timing would be … not great in terms of selling tix to a new arena.