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Amid Magic dysfunction, Dwight Howard’s agent is given formal permission to speak with L.A., New Jersey, and Dallas

Dec 10, 2011, 1:08 AM EDT

Orlando Magic v Atlanta Hawks - Game Six Getty Images

UPDATE (12:59 AM EST): Sam Amick of to the rescue:

Orlando PR man Joel Glass calls to inform that D. Howard’s agent now has permission to speak w/ Lakers, Nets, & Mavs about possible trade.

Glass was clear that this permission was from here “going forward,” not previously.

The Lakers and Nets make sense as suitors given the assets they have at their disposal, but how the Mavericks squeezed their way into this bunch is beyond me. Dallas doesn’t seem to have much to offer Orlando in a potential deal, and yet here they are, among the few teams Howard’s agent, Dan Fagan, is authorized to speak to on his client’s behalf. Bizarre.

12:50 AM EST: The NBA seems to have moved on past the lockout days of conflicting reports from troublesome unnamed sources and right on to conflicting reports from troublesome named sources. According to Ric Bucher of, Orlando Magic general manager Otis Smith has confirmed that Dwight Howard was given permission to consult with representatives from select teams. Whatever could they have to talk about?

But before we get too excited about the idea of an impending deal for Howard, Sam Amick of swept in with a contrary report. According to Amick, Magic CEO Alex Martins claimed that Howard was given no such permission, and that Orlando was still considering filing formal tampering charges against the teams that contacted him out of turn. It’s all a bit of a mess, especially considering that the reporting is so transparent; Bucher and Amick have their sources published in plain view, giving the entire basketball world a glimpse into the Orlando Magic’s current dysfunction.

It’s only fair, after all, considering the stink still emanating from the NBA’s recent blunder in canceling a potential three-way trade involving Chris Paul. As it was written in the new collective bargaining agreement: “If ridiculousness befalls one superstar seeking relocation, it must befall all superstars seeking relocation.” Trust me — it was in the fine print.

What this actually means for a potential Howard trade is anyone’s guess, as the Magic have sufficiently run the rest of the basketball world in circles over the availability of their franchise centerpiece. Hopefully things will be clarified over the next 24 hours or so, because as it stands, it’s tough to say if Howard has actually met with any teams, if he was allowed to in the first place, and how all of this impacts the potential for a trade.

  1. barnold1993 - Dec 10, 2011 at 1:24 AM

    I;m starting to see alot of trade rumors of Bulls acquiring Dwight Howard, I wonder if this is possible.

  2. mjbulls45 - Dec 10, 2011 at 1:28 AM

    HONESTLY – just stay in Orlando and be the ‘Man” alpha dog, be superman

    SUPERMAN DOES NOT TEAM UP WITH OTHER HEROES!!! why bc he doesnt have to…

    hes good enough to get the job done himself, it would be cool if howard did the OPPOSITE of all the other stars who wanna link up with other stars and form super teams

    what happened to players wanting to be “the guy”?

    slowly I’m starting to LOVE DURANT bc he is the only one that seems to wanna be THE GUY and not run to other stars or try to recruit them…

    and no Westbrook and Harden dont make up a big 3….Harden is a beast, but Westbrook just ruins Durants flow…

    • snoopy2014 - Dec 10, 2011 at 2:14 AM

      Actually, Superman joined the Justice League. Great show. Is it still on?

      • mjbulls45 - Dec 10, 2011 at 10:57 AM

        actually i was just trying to make an analogy to dwight howard selling out the Orlando Magic franchise to join other players… like Lebron did, but UNLIKE Lebron , Dwight Howard does NOT have a D-bag owner like Gilbert….

        and ur mad corny dude,

        were talking ball and being leaders and all that stuff,

        sorry I’m into ball , and I DONT KNOW the inner workings of the “super hero” comic world…


  3. savvybynature - Dec 10, 2011 at 1:32 AM

    Three-way trade w Houston.

    Orlando gets: Martin, Scola and Bynum (+ picks)

    Houston gets: Pau Gasol

    LA gets: Howard and Terkoglu

    The league office gets: another migraine.

  4. alexb64 - Dec 10, 2011 at 1:41 AM

    As irritating as it feels to agree with, Dan Gilbert is basically right, the other 25 teams may as well just be the Washington Generals. I’m a Hornets fan & I can actually understand why Chris Paul would embrace a move, he’s a championship calibre player on a team that for the immediate future looks like a 1 & done playoff team at best. I feel really bad for Orlando fans though because Dwight wants to bolt a really good team. Unless the plan is to just try to convert every fan in every city across the country into Lakers, Celtics, Knicks or Heat fans I don’t see much point in continuing to follow the league. The NHL gets so much crap, but you don’t see Alex Ovechkin demanding trades because the Capitals haven’t made it to the Stanley Cup yet, he hasn’t boo-hoo’d & forced The Capitals to trade him to The Bruins or Penguins where it would be easier.

    So I wish Chris Paul the best of luck, but I won’t be watching or attending any more NBA games until David Stern can convince me my team isn’t just basically paid sophomore-senior seasons of college basketball they skipped out on.

    • stoutfiles - Dec 10, 2011 at 3:17 AM

      To all the thumbs down, why again should this Hornets fan continue to be a Hornets fan? His team has no shot of being in the Finals, let alone ever winning. Pay a bunch a money to see at best a 4th seed and at best a 2nd round exit.

      Since 1984 only 8 different teams have won the championship. 25+ years and only 8 teams is not anywhere close to balance.

    • thatboi901 - Dec 10, 2011 at 4:40 AM

      Think the NBA has two problems big problems. Not enough good talent and the game being offense focused.

      Problem 1 is harder to solve. You can continue to dive into international pools and recruit from there.

      Problem 2 is easier to solve. So many rule changes benefits the offense. More defensive friendly rules would allows teams to be able to compete with cheaper defensive talent as oppose to superstar offense power. As the rules are now offensive talent is always going to win over defensive talent. NBA needs to create some type of balance between the two.

      • jmclarkent - Dec 10, 2011 at 8:11 AM

        The solution to problem #1 is unfortunately something the league would never consider (unless they were under extreme financial duress): Contraction.

        If the league were to eliminate four teams and hold a supplemental draft (slotting based on team records over the last few years) for the talent, it would not only help overall league depth but significantly deepen the talent pool.

  5. stoutfiles - Dec 10, 2011 at 3:27 AM

    Since 1984.

    NBA: 8 different champions.
    NFL: 15 different champions.
    MLB: 19 different champions.

    Please tell me why the small market fan should support the NBA balance structure.

    • leearmon - Dec 10, 2011 at 8:01 AM

      Since 1994: 12 Super Bowl Champions (Ravens, Bucs, Broncosx2 , Saints, Colts, Steelers x2 & Packers x2 small/medium market champs)

      Since 1994: 8 different NBA Finals Champions (Spurs X4, Pistons, Heat small-medium champs)

      As you can see, the numbers aren’t as bad as you and others would like it to be. Add to that, MLB has guaranteed contracts and no hard cap and they have better parity than the NFL. My opinion as to why the NBA has less (and has always had less) turnover than other leagues, is because there are much fewer players on an NBA roster compared to their counterparts. Plus there are no pitchers who are mainly responsible for defense, or a totally different group of 11 players responsible for defense. The same 5 guys have to play both sides of the ball, and if you have a better 5-10 guys you will win, no matter you location.

      And the Spurs, Thunder and Grizzlies are 3 small markets who fans would tell you there are great reasons to watch the NBA.

  6. sincere80 - Dec 10, 2011 at 5:36 AM

    What gets me about either of these situations is that NO ONE one seems to be laying the blame at the feet of the man that created this monster to begin with one David Stern. Stern DOES NOT want competitive balance. Look back over the history of the NBA since he took over in the early 80s (1984 to be exact)
    Champions by decade
    1980s: Lakers/Celtics/Lakers/76ers/Celtics/Lakers/Celtics/Lakers/Lakers/Pistons


    2000s: Lakers/Lakers/Lakers/Suprs/Pistons/Spurs/Heat/Spurs/Celtics/Lakers

    This is a pure money driven league fueled by television contracts. Remember all the bickering about how when San Antonio was boring and not nearly sexy enough for the appeal to masses of casual basketball fans? Go back and look at the ratings of those Finals. Rightfully so, a lot of blame goes on the players for wanting to play on adult versions of AAU; but Dictator Stern created this monster—model.

  7. jagwar73 - Dec 10, 2011 at 9:48 AM

    Oh yeah, blame the Magic.

  8. jagwar73 - Dec 10, 2011 at 9:48 AM

    They really want to be in this position.

  9. chadinkc30 - Dec 10, 2011 at 10:50 AM

    For all the whiners saying the league is unfair and unbalanced should technically HATE mlb then right? A league with NO salary cap whatsoever, and a team like the Yankees can spend $200 million more than some other team? Really? Last time I checked the Lakers were smart to have and get the pieces to be able to trade for these stars, meanwhile moronic franchises like Cleveland and many others aren’t! Simple as that! My point is although not perfect, the NBA is setup much more fair than MLB ever dreamed of!

  10. chadinkc30 - Dec 10, 2011 at 11:18 AM

    And please people quit comparing this to Miami, all of the players involved in that were free agents and were not traded for fair value. Whose fault was it that Cleveland and Toronto were left with nothing, their own! They could’ve traded their stars, but instead got nothing! That’s what Gilbert is mad at, he got nothing, meanwhile the magic and hornets aren’t about to be that dumb

  11. dadawg77 - Dec 10, 2011 at 1:28 PM

    Is the fact superstars all want to go to same markets a major issue for the league? Yes. Is the league working to solve it, no. There are two solutions to the issue, one create a franchise tag. I don’t think this will work as it hurt the league even more. The league more then any other professional sport is bought and sold on star power. The franchise tag will lead to more stars sulking and/or holding out. This will reduce the star power and hurt the league in trying to market itself.

    The best solution is two fold and part of it may already be completed, need to see how revenue sharing works (reason for baseball parity). Revenue sharing with the new system restrictions with eliminating the max salary. Say the Magic or Hornets could pay Howard/Paul considerably (say 30 million per) more then any other team, they aren’t leaving. Paul and Howard can ask for a trade, but they have a lot less leverage since they can’t leave without taking a huge financial hit. How many super stars in their primes of NBA in the 80’s left their teams? Barkley is the only one that I can think of. The system restrictions would keep superstar pay in check and the years short. Only issue would be mid tier players getting shafted as their salaries would decline but superstars would stay home.

  12. summoe2c - Dec 10, 2011 at 1:34 PM

    Is it possible dat Dwight will shock da NBA news n join his fellow addias brother in Rose?

  13. chadinkc30 - Dec 10, 2011 at 3:27 PM

    No its not possible, its either Lakers or nets. Lakers if the nets don’t offer something better than Lopez and 2 pics, which is laughable IMO.

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