Jeff Turner was calling from Dallas.
"I'm here on the lookout for Dwight," he said, chuckling.
Turner was in Big D for his daughter's volleyball tourney, not reporting on a Dwight Howard free-agency sighting. But that's the kind of light-hearted humor from Jeff that can carry the Magic viewing audience through another tough season post-Dwight.
Turner, 51, replaced Matt Guokas as the club's television analyst, signing a four-year deal.
The Magic stunned everyone by not renewing Guokas' contract. Although he had some health issues the last few years, the 69-year-old Guokas wasn't quite ready to leave the mike.
Guokas stayed classy, avoiding addressing his exit in the media. He also sent Turner a congratulatory e-mail.
Turner had made some pinch-hitting appearances for Guokas. Now he's faced with the fulltime task of replacing him and helping play-by-play man David Steele bring the games to living rooms and bar rooms in Central Florida.
"Sometimes now I feel like ... you're like Ray Perkins following Bear Bryant or Gene Bartow following John Wooden," Turner said. "Matt was so good; you're expected to do a good job. Those are big shoes for me to fill.
"It's hard not to do a good job when you work with David Steele. He'll make you look good."
Turner is no stranger to breaking down games. After seven seasons as a Magic player, he served as team radio analyst with Dennis Neumann from 1996-2005.
The Magic stayed in-house again with the move to Turner. Guokas was the team's first-ever coach and was at Steele's side since 2004.
Guokas coached Turner, a lefty-shooting power forward, through the first four seasons of the Magic's existence until Guokas stepped down after the 1992-93 season.
Turner is making the jump from coaching to the broadcast booth, leaving a championship team. He guided Lake Highland Prep to the 4A state title last season, his eighth at the school.
He already had decided to step down as coach before the Magic came calling with the TV offer. He is still an associate A.D. at Lake Highland Prep, supervising coaches in all sports, and now will try to juggle both jobs.
Turner believes coaching even on the high-school level will give him an added perspective.
"As a former player, that's the lens I look through," he said. "I know what guys are going through. Once I became a coach, now I have a new lens to look through ... how and why coaches make the decisions they make. I hope it makes me a better broadcaster."
Team broadcasters walk a fine line. They are paid by the club and/or were previously connected to the club, leading to cheerleading and away from honest criticism.
Guokas explained the game, did his homework and wasn't fearful of delivering pointed opinions. After all, viewers are no fools. They can see what's unfolding. Thousands can interact immediately through social media about a bad play or a bad coaching decision.
"You can't lie --- you're doing TV. It is what it is. People can see it. It's all how you frame it," Turner said. "Basketball is so fluid. There's no perfect players or coaches."
Turner says the Magic's rebuilding process requires a little different approach.