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Dwight Howard trade rumors heating up; maybe to Nets in three-team deal

Jul 8, 2012, 7:00 PM EDT

Dwight Howard AP

The Magic nearing a deal to ship out Ryan Anderson signals one thing — they are entering rebuilding mode, no joke, no holdovers.

Which means Dwight Howard rumors are picking up steam, fast. How much steam depends on who you ask — some sources sugest the deal could be done as soon as Monday, but there are a who lot of moving parts (maybe 11 players plus picks and three teams) and those kind of deals fall apart much faster than they come together.

The Brooklyn Nets — Howard’s preferred destination — have needed a third team to come in and take the soon-to-be-bloated sign-and-trade contract of Kris Humphries to make a deal with Orlando work (the Magic would take Brook Lopez and his soon-to-be bloated contract, plus a boatload of picks). They are making progress on that front, according to both Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports (also seen on the NBC Sports Network ) and this from Ken Berger of CBSSports.com.

Cleveland has emerged as a “possible destination” for Humphries in such a scenario, in which the Nets would attempt to accumulate at least three first-round picks to send to the Magic in their package for Howard, one of the sources said.

The Cavs have as many as six first-round picks in the next three drafts — three of them from previous trades, with various levels of protection. However, with cap space to sign Humphries as a free agent, getting Humphries alone wouldn’t provide any incentive for Cleveland to surrender one of those picks.

Front office folk in the East didn’t think any team in that conference would be willing to help Brooklyn create a another “big three” — Deron Williams, Joe Johnson and Dwight Howard. But we all may have underestimated Chris Grant, the Cleveland GM who made reaches in the last two drafts the Tristan Thompson and Dion Waiters (to be fair, we should wait until those guys don’t live up to the No. 4 pick status before calling them reaches).

The Lakers are not out of this, but they have more hurdles to a deal and it seems to be falling apart. First, Los Angeles likes Andrew Bynum and acting owner Jim Buss would prefer to sign Bynum to an extension and win with his guy. Second, Howard has consistently said he would not sign an extension in Los Angeles, and while the Lakers are confident if he played in L.A. he would change his mind that is a massive risk to take. Finally, why would Orlando trade one unpredictable big man in the last year of his contract for Bynum, an unpredictable big man in the last year of his contract? Bynum is supposed to be interested in Dallas, Houston and other teams if he leaves Los Angeles, but there has been no mention of him wanting to play in Orlando (although, to use his phrase, they do have banks in Orlando).

The Rockets also are not giving up on Howard and are making a push using Marcus Camby as part of the bait.

But the Nets appear to be he front runners. Pulling off a three-team deal to get Howard to Brooklyn is far from easy and not yet where you should even call it likely. But things are picking up steam fast.

  1. mojosmagic - Jul 8, 2012 at 11:26 PM

    With that moron Chis Grant it is likely.

  2. proballerslounge - Jul 9, 2012 at 1:31 AM

    http://proballerslounge.wordpress.com/

    I hope he goes to the Nets

  3. jvnewell - Jul 9, 2012 at 3:40 AM

    Well…I guess as a Magic fan…I can resign myself to the fact that Orlando will never win a title…I guess I should be happy with the two NBA Finals appearances that they did make because Orlando will NEVER make the Finals after they trade Dwight Howard. Nice to know that I follow a team that is a farm team for the major market clubs. Now I know how the Pittsburgh Pirates fans feel. Orlando Magic = Pittsburgh Pirates of the NBA.

  4. kfon41 - Jul 9, 2012 at 5:51 AM

    maybe Dan Gilbert between other things, wants to make life more difficult for Miami, plus he gets the replacement for jamison

  5. xjokerz - Jul 9, 2012 at 6:19 AM

    Da hell w dwhite

  6. congocash - Jul 9, 2012 at 6:57 AM

    Nets will have 2 stars and nobody else, like the knicks after the melo trade.

    • wjmoffatt - Jul 9, 2012 at 7:44 AM

      First statement and a horrible one.
      1.) The Nets will have 4 stars or good players how ever you look at it. Joe Johnson and Gerald Wallace aren’t just some scrubs.
      2.) The knicks acquired two guys that like the same spots on the floor. The Nets on the other hand two main guys are a PG and a C, so how is their games the same, they aren’t! While the two other guys are different elements that are perfect for them too, Joe is a shooter and Gerald a slasher.

  7. isujames - Jul 9, 2012 at 7:48 AM

    @chadinkc30 My ? 2 U is ? won the MVP awards of those finals, Kobe didn’t ???????

    • gpatrick15 - Jul 9, 2012 at 1:11 PM

      Um…maybe not the first three. But who else on those last two title teams was capable of winning the Finals MVP? Like Kobe or not, he honestly desrved 2 finals MVP’s in 2009 and 2010.

  8. corcow - Jul 9, 2012 at 7:51 AM

    First off just trade this bum so I don’t have to hear about another Dwight Howard trade rumor. And second I had read somewhere that if the team got Howard they would have to pay $104 million in luxury tax which is just crazy. If that’s the case why would they want this guy. Who knows he could get to the Nets and change his mind to the Lakers. The guy is as loyal as a stripper girlfriend. Orlando trade this guy so I can stop reading these useless posts.

  9. isujames - Jul 9, 2012 at 7:52 AM

    The same amount Kobe would have without Shaq or the other bigs he was blessed with.ZERO

  10. tashkalucy - Jul 9, 2012 at 8:58 AM

    The column makes little sense.

    The Cavs drafted a center that will play part-time. And when he’s playing, Varajo will move over to his natural position, power forward. Last year the Cavs spent the 4th pick of the draft on Tristan Thompson, a power forward. So what exactly is it that they need Humphries for?

    And how about some discussion of the salary cap? When Bosh, James and Wade signed the Heat only had one player under contract – Chambers. And in order to fit under the cap, those 3 gentlemen (sic) had to take pay cuts to make it work under the cap. The Nets currently have Deron Williams signed on a max contract, Joe Johnson signed on a max contract (supposedly the 2nd highest in the league next to Kobe), and Wallace signed for $10M a year. And now they’re supposed to fix Howard’s max contract in under the cap? HOW?

    This is the problem with the NBA. A foul is a foul except when stars are involved. Now a salary cap is a salary cap…..but whoops….not in this case.

    How can fans follow a league like this, where a simple trade has to have multiple attorney’s confer and negotiate with one another, the teams, and the NBA’s League Office? Fans are supposed to understand this? Again – why did the heats 3 max players have to take a pay cut, yet the Nets can sign 3 max players plus have a guy making $10M a year and still have space.

    Something is not right here. Maybe the article (gee, would New York writers be inaccurate about a gossipy, rumored trade for a star going to one of their teams?) is wrong, maybe it’s wrong for me as a fan to believe there’s some sort of salary cap. In any event, pretty soon the WWF will be looking to the NBA for ideas on how to sell entertainment.

    • tashkalucy - Jul 9, 2012 at 9:42 AM

      Q – When does a professional sports league have game rules but they don’t count on the field of play?

      A – When it’s the NBA.

      Q – When can 2 ex-coaches do color play-by-play on national TV, see the replay 10 times, know the rules, and disagree on what the referee called?

      A – When it’s the NBA.

      Q – When does a professional sports league have rules about how players are to conduct themselves, but they don’t count if the player is a star?

      A – When it’s the NBA.

      Q – When is the coach of a team not in charge of what his players do when in a game?

      A – When it’s the NBA.

      Q – When does a sports league have a salary cap, but it doesn’t count when star players can go to a glamour market?

      A – When it’s the NBA.

      Q – Can a professional sports league keep it’s fans when it proves time and time again that it is in the entertainment business to make money? The league, its administrators, its officials., its players and its hangers-on are shown to have no integrity other then to make as much money as they can and to sell their celebrity?

      A – You answer.

  11. chadinkc30 - Jul 9, 2012 at 9:07 AM

    Of course Kobe would have zero if he played with a bunch of scrubs! Jordan would have zero if he played with scrubs! Great point….

  12. fiyeaglesfiy - Jul 9, 2012 at 10:21 AM

    Here’s a perspective that doesn’t get a lot of talk. What if Orlando just doesn’t trade Dwight? I know, I know, you’re risking losing him for nothing but I think Orlando has more leverage than they think they have. Dwight has made no secret of his desire to play for the Nets. Last year, if Orlando didn’t trade him, he could opt out of his deal and sign a free agent deal with the cap-flexible Nets in the offseason along with Deron Williams. Since he has opted in for this year, the Nets have done what they needed to do and resigned Williams, Gerald Wallace, and traded for Joe Johnson. They no longer have that flexibility. If Dwight becomes a free agent next season he is no longer a risk to sign with the the Nets. The Magic would need to agree to a sign-and-trade and they can just say no. Other teams that would also not be able to sign him without the Magic being complicit are the Lakers, Heat, Knicks, Bulls and other places that Dwight would consider for the opportunity to play for a contender. Now when free agency hits next year, Dwight will be free to choose between Orlando’s max deal, which would be a longer contract an more money per year than other teams can offer or he can take less money to sign elsewhere but the teams with cap space to sign him without a trade are mostly in rebuilding mode and do not give him a better chance to win than Orlando would. So would Dwight leave all that extra money on the table to go play for a different non-contender?

    Depending on what the Mavs do this offseason, they may be the biggest threat to steal Dwight in this scenario but after them, would be slim pickings for him.

  13. klownboy - Jul 9, 2012 at 10:22 AM

    If the Nets could land Howard without gutting their roster, look the hell out…

    http://wp.me/p1gCK6-pR

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