Posted June 27, 2013

Report: Dwight Howard unlikely to re-sign with the Lakers this summer

2013 Free agency, Dallas Mavericks, Dwight Howard, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers, Rob Mahoney

We know better at this point than to wholeheartedly buy into Dwight Howard’s regular shifts in preference and opinion, but the framing of Howard’s latest turn — by ESPN the Magazine‘s Chris Broussard – seems notable if only for its implications.

According to Broussard, the Lakers may no longer be the favorites to sign Howard this summer. Dallas and Houston are reportedly the frontrunners, per Broussard, in part because of Howard’s seeming distaste for re-signing with L.A. From Broussard’s report:

Howard’s major problem with the Lakers is the system that coach Mike D’Antoni employs. Beyond that, he did not enjoy playing with Kobe Bryant, though he could manage to do so in a different system, a source said. Howard also does not want to be second fiddle to Bryant for several more seasons.

It needs to be noted how ridiculous this notion is. Howard has expressed similar gripes since D’Antoni took over for Mike Brown back in November, expressing his desire to be used more regularly in the post as opposed to in pick-and-rolls. Howard is a solid post-up threat, and certainly better than basketball fans at large seem to believe. But he’s also the league’s finest pick-and-roll finisher. It’s not all that surprising that a player so hungry for public approval would aim to appease his critics by working more often from the low block, but Howard does so at the expense of the Lakers’ offense.

To be clear, though, Howard only averaged roughly three fewer post possessions per 36 minutes last season in L.A. than he did the year prior with Orlando. He received fewer touches and attempted fewer shots overall, but some of that is merely the reality of playing with a teammate as offensively dominant as Bryant — an experience that Howard never encountered with the Magic. It’s up to Howard to decide if that’s a concession he ultimately wants to make, and based on this reported flirtation with signing with Dallas, Houston or Atlanta, we can guess which way he’s currently leaning. Some players want to feel wanted, and Howard is certainly among them.

We have no reason to think that Howard is out the Lakers’ door just yet, nor to believe that the Mavs or Rockets may soon add a superstar.

Dallas might be attractive to Dwight in terms of claiming a team of his own, but the Mavs still have the obstacle of moving Shawn Marion’s $9 million contract to clear the necessary cap space, and they don’t have much to offer immediately in terms of a competitive basketball product. Assuming that Dallas can move Marion without accepting any salary in return, the only Mavs under contract for next season are Dirk Nowitzki, Vince Carter, Jae Crowder and Jared Cunningham. Howard would eat up almost all of the team’s cap space if he signed a max deal, and would thus leave little room for Dallas to build a contending core until the following summer.

The Rockets, for their part, employ both a high-volume shooter in James Harden and a style that runs contrary to all that Howard allegedly wants. He’d be the biggest name on Houston’s roster, but his arrival would necessitate a departure from all that the Rockets did so well last season. There’s appeal there, still, and perhaps Howard wouldn’t care much for what Houston would have to give up, stylistically, in order to appease him. But there’s enough room for doubt in his pairing with the Rockets given all that we know about Howard’s preferred usage at this stage in his career.

14 comments
cesar escobar
cesar escobar

Howard is looking the best to got to and there is nothing wrong with that. Unless the Lakers get rid Mike D' Antoni, Howard will not be back. How bad do the Lakers want him? Nobody likes D' Antoni, get rid off him and hire Phil.

CobyPreimesberger
CobyPreimesberger

again people yes technically the lakers can offer more money at 118 but he loses 60 million if he stays as again if he were to stay with the lakers he would pay 52 % of his net income in taxes and if you look at it the best way for him to make the most money would be a sign and trade to the rockets, why, as that would allow him to keep about 14 million in gross income, as if there were a sign and trade he would only have to give up 46,020,000 and would pocket gross income of 71,980,000 and if he were just to sign with rockets or mavs he would make 2.96 million less in gross income if he left the lakers


ITATTRACTS
ITATTRACTS

Guy is a cancer wherever he goes and will never have the respect he thinks he deserves. Let him go. 

joel_eustaquio
joel_eustaquio

I dont see him win championship with Houston. I dont believe Harden taking over. He is not like K. Durant. If he goes to Dallas with Dirk on his side who has been injured a year a ago I dont see also him winning there. Dallas is a rebuilding team. He needs a good point guard likes of CP3 and a good coach to beat the teams like Miami and Oklahoma. They have a chance in LA Lakers with Phil (maybe) on there side LA Lakers can get any player who can contribute to the team They don't care about luxury tax They only care about winning championship. The Miami Heat team is unbeatable because they can upgrade there exiting roster each year they know their weeknesses.Anytime they can get a center and a real point guard and I can see no team can beat them in the next more than five years from now!!!

JamieBreslow
JamieBreslow

Considering the Lakers just drafted a 6'11" PF I think it's safe to assume the days of Howard being a Laker are coming to an end.

HOFPufnstuf
HOFPufnstuf

Howard. I hate the lakers i should beg you to stay ut you are so sick and sad you make laker haters feel sorry for them. Youre a disgrace. Go

Stevo1
Stevo1

Howard is a giant waste of time.  And money.  He will never win a championship.

robert O
robert O

He was on a team where he was "the man" and they didn't win. He has no shot other than dunks. Goodbye and good luck!

jimmercik
jimmercik

Actually, D Howard should go to the Patriots and Tebow should got to the Nets.

msmithnv
msmithnv

Howard is going to Brooklyn. Tebow will be a Tight end with Patriots.

ShawnKemp2012
ShawnKemp2012

I wouldn't waste a cent on this guy.  He's never really developed his game and now his athleticism is waning.  Plus he's a huge diva princess who's never really demonstrated a competitive nature.  

bartmolina
bartmolina

Wherever Howard goes, he needs to play hard for a few years before contenting for the ring. So he might as well stay in LA and start the process. Even Lebron realized that there is simply no shortcut to championship. If Howard jumps ship, he will again be frustrated after a few months. Is he wise enough to stay in LA? One hope so but in his case, it's anybody's guess.

leehwgoc
leehwgoc

@msmithnv Nets don't have cap space for him.  Especially now with Garnett and Pierce.

Howard will probably be a Rocket.

Lacentral
Lacentral

@bartmolina come on dog u & i both know this is howard! if he bails so be it! hell lakers need to say wow now the clippers are better than us??? wtf going on? lol