After another frustrating night at Orlando City Stadium, these texts were found on a fan’s smartphone this morning.
Obviously, this never happened, but I’d imagine more than a few of us have been playing “what-if” scenarios about last season’s firing of long-time coach and Orlando City icon Adrian Heath. Like a romantic relationship that has hit a rough patch, we wonder if Jason Kreis is the one for us...we wonder if we were too quick to judge our former love, too ready to make a change from our long-time steady but unglamorous relationship? Doubts and regrets always seem to loom when things aren’t going well in the new situation.
If we are to take this romantic metaphor further, the question we have to ask is this: Is Jason Kreis our soulmate...err...our soul-coach? The big fundamental questions have to be asked now at the end of this season, do we have the same ambitions, are we compatible, are we a good match? Typing this out, I’m not sure I know the answers. I’ll tell you what I do know, or at least what I think.
You have to make it work with the person you are with until you can’t anymore. Looking back won’t help, and only builds more doubts. Our questions about this season are numerous. Most of them start and end with how Jason Kreis has seemingly improved a team while simultaneously finding a way to make the team less competitive for that coveted first playoff appearance. We will spend the off-season asking those questions.
For now, I’m reminded of the importance of stability. Despite what Kreis has shown with his year in New York and season and a half here in Orlando, I do honestly believe Kreis will be a great coach, he will continue the legacy he built in Salt Lake City. We would all love to see that happen here in Orlando, but those fundamental relationship questions linger. Do we want the same things? Management would be wise to have a relationship counselor on hand this winter as Kreis and his bosses discuss the team’s direction and off-season transfers in and out, to build bridges of communication so that everyone is working from the same page.
While it is popular to call for a coach’s firing when team goals aren’t met, I think Kreis deserves another season to put his vision into focus.
Like a drunken text sent to an ex at two in the morning, our doubts and regrets can remind us in the sober light of morning what we do have. We are committed to the one we are with for now, and we need to stand by our man, for now.