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Dwight Howard goes on rant about fourth quarter touches, even after the Magic win

Feb 12, 2012, 1:30 PM EDT

Orlando Magic's Dwight Howard gestures during the first half of their NBA basketball game against the Boston Celtics in Boston Reuters

Let me tell you how bad Dwight Howard‘s post-game rant in Milwaukee was.

I don’t have enough room to block all the important quotes. I’m sitting here, staring at this mass of text, and that’s usually my format. Gentle intro, segue to blockquote, blockquote, discussion of blockquote, tangential remarks, unnecessarily snarky finish, the end. But this thing is too long. So please go read the full remarks, as I try and give you some indication of Howard going off the deep end after… wait for it… the Magic won Saturday night.

“I do want the ball more in the fourth quarter,” a frustrated Howard told FOX Sports exclusively after the game.

“I want to become a closer. The only way you get there is by getting the ball and have coach have the confidence in giving me the ball.

“That’s how Kobe (Bryant) and the rest of the great fourth-quarter players got that way. It’s trial and error. When Kobe first got in the league, it took him a while to become the killer he is in the fourth quarter now. That’s because he went through that phase where he had to learn what shots to take and just get confidence in taking shots in the fourth quarter.

“That’s one thing that I want for myself, so I can become the guy who finishes games for my team. I want to be that guy whose team wants him to close games out for them. Coach just needs to have confidence in me.”

via ‘Superman’ expects to wear cape late in games.

Now, there’s a number of things that are weird about this, as noted by Sam Gardner of Fox Sports Florida. Howard is incredibly hard to get one-on-ones with, because, you know, he’s an All-Star. And he really threw his team and coach under the bus after a 16-0 run to win a game? Maybe the reporter just seized an opportunity put out the bait, and Howard landed on it. If so, good on him. But Howard hasn’t been careless with his approach to the media. This whole thing seems weird.

First off, let’s take note that while dealing with a million questions regarding his trade demands and his situation with the Lakers, he name drops Kobe Bryant. There are a million players he could have dropped there. Is Bryant the most notable? Absolutely. Is he the only one who people have reported Howard has a bad relationship with after phone calls this month? Also yes. Additionally, since he’s saying he wants to be the closer, and he’s saying Kobe Bryant is L.A.’s closer…

No, you know what? We’ll save that for another time, because I’m far enough out on the ledge as it is right now.

Howard is complaining… after a win! His team won! Jason Richardson won the game for the Magic by going nutso in the second half! Howard talks all this year about how he needs help, he just wants to win, he wants to have better teammates. Now he’s mad because he didn’t get the ball enough in the fourth quarter, when they won, and his teammates step up.

It’s always something with Howard. He’s creating an impossible situation for the Magic, and you’d think he’d just be happy for the guys he says he loves so much in Orlando.

Putting aside his free-throw issues, the fact that nearly no team goes to their big man late in games to close, Howard’s long-standing history of difficulty with quality low-post defense and the fact he just wasn’t having a great game, this just isn’t the time. I’m willing to discuss how to use Howard late in games, his effectiveness in shutting the door, all of that. But not after a win and not after everything else that’s gone on in Orlando. This is just absurd.


  1. cakemixa - Feb 12, 2012 at 1:48 PM

    How can anyone take this guy seriously. I mean, how do you publicly demand a trade and then complain about your team and call them out?

    • progress2011 - Feb 12, 2012 at 3:02 PM

      Good point cakemix……Especially when you are winning !

  2. rgledz - Feb 12, 2012 at 2:03 PM

    He’s the definition of a basketball diva. Wants everything, expects everything…..has done nothing. Dunk contest champ……….yeah.

  3. goforthanddie - Feb 12, 2012 at 2:20 PM

    He wants to be “the man”, yet wants to go elsewhere and play with other “the man”s.
    Keep it up, you’re starting to make leb look good.

  4. kandh2004 - Feb 12, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    I was a big Howard fan till I just read this. How do you say you want to win but bitch about the ball after WINNING. Go to the Lakers, or Mavs and see how much you get the ball in the 4th. Just retarded.

    • 00maltliquor - Feb 12, 2012 at 3:02 PM

      I totally agree with you and feel the same way. Howard was one of my favorite players until right about…now. I had to look the other way that year JJ Redick got shook out of his shoes by somebody, then at the timeout Howard was seen MOCKING JJ getting crossed. Now this! I don’t want him on the Lakers at all now.

  5. Gordon - Feb 12, 2012 at 2:44 PM

    He’s not “all about winning”. He’s all about being “the man” & a celebrity.

  6. raidmagic - Feb 12, 2012 at 2:50 PM

    Uhh they didn’t go to you because you were 5 for 15 from 5′ out and most nights can’t hit the broadside of a barn from the free throw line. Great defensive player? Yes. Closer? No.

  7. 00maltliquor - Feb 12, 2012 at 3:05 PM

    How about you work on your post game and more importantly your free throws before you start bitchin’ and doubting your coaches decisions, lil’ buster!

  8. progress2011 - Feb 12, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    This guy is one of the most over-rated players in my recent memory. He can jump really high….that’s it !!!

    Due to pure basketball ” fundamentals ” he is not in the same league as Gasol nor Bynum !

    Especially Gasol !

    He is seven foot and probably has the wing span of another 6-7 feet.
    He understands basketball fundamentals.
    Plays within the teams format. Never complains.
    Works hard.
    Doesn’t care about being in front of the camera.
    Reviewing their individual stats, they are very similar on paper. But the one with the slightly better stats is causing the chemistry of the team to implode.

    Basically, he is almost the Exact opposite of Howard.

    The Magic should trade the Howard disease, immediately if they can get Gasol, some cash and maybe a draft pick!

  9. glink123 - Feb 12, 2012 at 3:34 PM

    Dwight Howard = Terrell Owens

    • goforthanddie - Feb 12, 2012 at 4:27 PM

      Nah, Howard still has a job.

      • progress2011 - Feb 12, 2012 at 8:50 PM

        Yeah he still has a job for now !

        But as soon as his ” Very Limited skill set ” starts to fade….just a little…he will be at home exiled early….aka. with Terrell, Allen Iverson, M. Abdul-rahoof, Isiah Ryder etc. etc. etc.

  10. bxassman - Feb 12, 2012 at 4:09 PM

    Dwight’s head is getting too big for his current”small market” He forgets that he is a league leader in missed foul shots and turnovers,not to mention technicals. If he made 70% of his foul shots what would the Magic’s record be????

  11. t16rich - Feb 12, 2012 at 5:10 PM

    Ahhhh. So it’s about him cementing a legacy as a closer. Not the teams record. Orlando is 1 win behind Atlanta and 3 behind Miami in the division and this guy keeps dragging down any positivity.

  12. isujames - Feb 12, 2012 at 8:59 PM

    You won A hole, basketball is a team sport.Stop trying to make your numbers look good.

  13. ajeetakhanna - Feb 12, 2012 at 10:01 PM

    Alright, this is where I say Dwight needs to learn how and when to shut up.

    It all started when Dwight said he’s not getting enough help by his teammates last year.

    It was a valid excuse. Vince Carter and Rashard Lewis were not the answers, I knew it, everybody else knew it, and as did Dwight.

    The Magic needed an infusion of youth to get somewhere. Otis Smith trades for pieces he believed would complement the 4-out-1-in offense because a.) you get a guy who was once familiar with the system (Hedo Turkoglu) and a 3-point specialist known as Jason Richardson.

    And then after Rashard Lewis was gone, it opened up more playing time for Ryan Anderson.

    Yes, it was a bumpy season full of new players and new defensive schemes to learn on the fly. Naturally the team chemistry was going to be off-balance.

    So fans put the scapegoat on Otis Smith. Not to mention, it Dwight who was the one bitching about the team’s lackadaisical efforts.

    And now that it’s a new season, Dwight says “But I just want to win.”

    Oh look, the Magic are winning now.

    Last season he complained about not getting enough help because they weren’t winning, RIGHT?

    Now that the team is winning…his complaints/excuses continuously pile up.

    Even after having a piss poor performance scoring 5-15 from the field last night against the Bucks after being thoroughly defended by Drew Gooden and company, he grumbles about not getting the ball enough in the fourth quarter?


    So, while Dwight can throw his teammates under the bus all he wants…and then pretend that he’s not winning because of his own individualistic goals, he should realize he’s not going to earn the respect he thinks he deserves even if he moves to a different team or not. Nor will he get the ball in the fourth quarter – and he knows he’s a liability during that time of the ball game.

  14. mcjon22 - Feb 12, 2012 at 10:57 PM

    “I want to become a closer. The only way you get there is by getting the ball and have coach have the confidence in giving me the ball.”

    Hey Dwight, you left out the little fact that you are a TERRIBLE free throw shooter, hence making you a liability in the 4th quarter ala Shaq. Maybe you should shot 1,000 free throws a day in the summer instead of trying to become Hollywood

  15. justafan50 - Feb 12, 2012 at 11:00 PM

    I think you all have missed it. The word is SELFISH!
    I think the real Howard should have a seat, and allow the Howard everyone likes to stand up or Lebron will no longer be the most hated.

  16. pxeeks - Feb 13, 2012 at 1:29 AM

    TO made his way on here… You know you did something wrong Dwight Howard soon to be answering the press with “Next Question”

  17. drobstad - Feb 13, 2012 at 10:14 AM

    I will gladly take him on the Knicks lol

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