Where will Dwight Howard be dealt before the trade deadline?
Writers from around the Tribune Co. discuss where Dwight Howard might end up if dealt by the Orlando Magic before the NBA trade deadline. Feel free to join the discussion by leaving a comment of your own.
Baxter Holmes, Los Angeles Times
“It’s about wherever God wants me to play, wherever He wants me to go.” – Dwight Howard
Let’s ask Tim Tebow, then. (He and God are best buds.)
Or let’s just pick the Lakers because … why not? He can play with Kobe Bryant, making Howard’s dream come true. He can play in a huge media market … and be a “Hollywood star.” He can win a title this season.
Plus, there’s the Shaq-precedent. Shaq left Orlando for L.A. and it worked out fine -- or far more than fine.
If the Magic wants Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum in return, Howard will probably never suit up for the Lakers. Then again, with the Clippers on the rise and the Lakers in decline, don’t be surprised if the Lakers' brass makes some bold moves to get Howard and and get back on top.
Shandel Richardson, South Florida Sun Sentinel
The Orlando Magic has been here before. If the team learned anything from that experience, then Dwight Howard will be gone before the trading deadline.
The Magic brass will not let this become another Shaquille O’Neal situation. Howard has made it clear he wants out. There is no point in dragging out this process. It’s time to grant his wish. Where doesn't matter. Send him to Los Angeles, Chicago, New Jersey or anywhere else Howard has hinted he wants to play.
At least this time the Magic can get something in return. O’Neal left for free. By trading Howard, the Magic has a chance to build the franchise. Then maybe, just maybe, focus can be on actual basketball and not whether Howard stays or leaves.
The Magic found a replacement for the Superman of the early 1990s. They will find a replacement for the replacement.
Mark Cuban has been waaaay too quiet since his Mavericks finally brought him a championship. He must be twitching like his "Dancing With the Stars" gig with all this inactivity. And while his lockout-shortened season philosophy can't be questioned, he's known for making the big moves. Thus, even though the Mavericks don't have the most attractive package to land Dwight Howard, look for Cuban to somehow rope in other teams to land The Big D in The Big D.
Cuban and Mavericks basketball chief Donnie Nelson did the right thing by letting Tyson Chandler walk and setting up the Mavericks for future moves. Most assumed those would be in free agency. But Cuban and the Mavericks also have been active in the trade market in the past. And it's hard to see him sitting the Howard sweepstakes out.
It is clear Howard has to be dealt now with the free fall the Magic is in and Howard openly questioning his teammates. His agent has made clear for now the Mavericks, Lakers and Nets are the only teams for which Howard will sign an extension. Look for Dallas to pull the upset.
Photo: Dwight Howard. Credit: Phelan M. Ebenhack / Associated Press