Skip to content

Dwight Howard trade still in neutral

Jan 9, 2012, 11:07 AM EDT

Dwight Howard, Omer Asik AP

I’d be surprised if Dwight Howard is traded before the All-Star game the last weekend of February.

That is if he gets moved at all — Howard said he may not to Yahoo Sports.

“I don’t think they are going to do anything right now because we’re winning,” Howard said after a 104-97 victory over the Sacramento Kings improved the Magic’s record to 6-3. “Even if this is the last season, let’s go out hard, regardless.”

When asked if he expects Orlando to trade him by the NBA’s March 15 deadline, Howard said: “I don’t think so.”

That is a huge risk and potentially franchise crushing choice by the Magic. Dwight Howard can and likely will opt out of his contract at the end of this season and if he becomes a free agent the Magic will get nothing for him when he leaves. Just like with Shaq. Trade him and you at least jump-start the rebuilding process — although reportedly the Magic want veteran players so they can continue to be good but not good enough when he leaves.

He is going to leave. Sorry Magic fans, but it’s true. He put out a trade request to go to the Lakers, Nets or Mavericks and that is still on the table, he told Sam Amick of Sports Illustrated.

“Nothing has changed,” Howard had said before the game. “There’s no need to focus on anything else besides going out every night and playing hard for 48 minutes or however long I’m on the court. All that other stuff is up to the Magic and up to my agent.”

Orlando is taking its time waiting for a better offer to come up. The Nets looked like the front runner but Magic GM Otis Smith never seemed warm to the idea of Brook Lopez as a centerpiece, and that was before Lopez broke a bone in his foot. The Lakers are not giving up both Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol. The Mavericks don’t have the pieces for a trade. So, Orlando waits, seeing if a good rental offer comes through or if the pressure on those teams will improve the offers.

Rumors surfaced in Orlando last week via a local television station that Howard is trying to recruit Deron Williams to come to Orlando. That’s not happening. First, there is no way the Nets are trading Williams — they mortgaged the future to land him and he is the guy they want to lead them into the new building in Brooklyn next season. They are all in, they could lose him to free agency but they are not trading him. And even if they could, what exactly is on the Orlando roster anybody wants besides Howard? Nothing.

So you can sign Williams as a free agent? Wrong. No you can’t. Even after the amnesty clause used on Gilbert Arenas the Magic will be at about $58 million in payroll on the books for next season, which will be over the salary cap. Which means all they can offer is a few million through an exception. Dallas — that would be Williams’ hometown — has cleared out enough cap space to offer a max deal. So, your only hope is to get someone to take on Hedo Turkoglu’s contract to free up cap space. Good luck with that.

Still, for now at least, Howard isn’t going anywhere.

  1. beagle11 - Jan 9, 2012 at 11:17 AM

    Would the Knicks be crazy to offer Chandler and Amare for Howard and Hedo? Would the Magic be crazy to take that?

  2. captainwisdom8888 - Jan 9, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    The Sixers will throw in Elton Brand, Spencer Hawes, Evan Turner, and a 1st round pick for Dwight Howard. Please.

  3. david407 - Jan 9, 2012 at 2:23 PM

    The Magic don’t have anything the Nets would want? How about Nelson, Ryan Anderson, and Redick, and a couple picks? Salaries match up perfectly, Anderson is playing out of his mind right now. That would give the Nets 3 starting caliber players, that’s 2 more than they have right now….

  4. dirksimmons - Jan 9, 2012 at 2:36 PM

    Talk Dwight into coming to Chicago and this trade won’t be stuck in neutral anymore.

  5. tomshoe - Jan 9, 2012 at 3:21 PM

    Come on, Orlando, don’t be like whiny Dan Gilbert. Get the best offer you can, trade him, get Turkoglu’s contract off the books, and keep Ryan Anderson and some solid pieces you can use to rebuild. Don’t let him walk away for nothing.

  6. Mostdiggity - Jan 9, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    how bout Superman for Cousins and Tryeke Evan?

  7. cap1378 - Jan 9, 2012 at 11:17 PM

    Amare and chandler to Orlando. DH to Knicks. Pick up deron Williams in off season. Orlando would take that hands down. Knicks would struggle this year but theyre struggling as it is anyway. I hope somebody’s listening in the knick front office.

  8. cap1378 - Jan 9, 2012 at 11:20 PM

    Ps: dantoni needs to go!

  9. cluelessdufus - Jan 10, 2012 at 12:40 AM

    the lakers and Andrew Bynum are doing great with 18 points and 15 rebounds mabey have there own dwight howard this trade is only holding if andrew bynum keeps up his work otherwise theres the nets have brook lopezand 2 first round picks which by the way proably top 10 picks

  10. beagle11 - Jan 11, 2012 at 7:49 AM

    yeah

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Featured video

What players stood out at World Cup?
Top 10 NBA Player Searches
  1. R. Rondo (2615)
  2. E. Bledsoe (2527)
  3. K. Bryant (2178)
  4. L. James (2068)
  5. D. Rose (1832)
  1. R. Allen (1695)
  2. N. Young (1606)
  3. K. Irving (1535)
  4. J. Hickson (1464)
  5. G. Oden (1409)