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Report: Four-team deal sending Howard to Lakers finalized, awaits league approval

Aug 9, 2012, 10:27 PM EDT

Dwight Howard AP

Finally, Dwight Howard is being traded.

A complex four-team trade that sends Dwight Howard to the Lakers and Andre Iguodala to the Nuggets and involves the 76ers and Magic has been approved in principle by the teams and will go to the league for formal approval on Friday, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.

Sources close to the process told Stein and’s Ramona Shelburne that a trade call with the league office has been scheduled for Friday to secure the necessary NBA approval to make the deal official.

The deal means the Lakers get Howard; the Magic get Arron Afflalo, Al Harrington, Nikola Vucevic, just drafted Moe Harkless (No. 15 pick in this draft) and a first round pick from each of the three other teams; the Sixers get Andrew Bynum and take on Jason Richardson and his contract; the Nuggets get Andre Iguodala.

That varies from the original report but fits with reports that Pau Gasol is not part of the deal. Expect some changes in the final form, but that seems to be the core of it.

This makes a lot of sense for the Lakers — they would start Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Antwan Jamison (probably), Pau Gasol, Dwight Howard and off the bench… does it matter? They would move up with the Heat as title contenders, and we can debate it but I think it moves them just past the Thunder.

However, Howard will not sign an extension with the Lakers. He shouldn’t, if he does he only gets three years at lower raises than if he becomes a free agent and re-signs with the Lakers. That would let him get a five year max deal with larger raises. Still, there is some risk for the Lakers.

Also, there is concern about Howard’s back — he had surgery on it and is rehabbing it in Los Angeles. That said he does not have a history of injury concerns (like Bynum), before last season he had never missed more than three games.

I get this for the Nuggets, who have wanted Iguodala for a while.

I get this for the Sixers, who get an anchor big in Bynum — and they are reportedly willing to gamble they can re-sign him. Philly athletes will tell you that if the fans in the city respect you and your effort it is the best place in the world to play… Bynum lived up to that last season, but before not so much. Bynum also grew up in New Jersey about an hour from Philly. Bynum is very money motivated and the extra cash the Sixers can offer with his Bird rights will play a big role. Also, Richardson’s deal is less painful than Iggy’s.

For the Magic, is this really better than what they were offered before? Afflalo is a quality NBA wing, Vucevic is young and could develop into a solid big, Harrington can be bought out after this season, Harkless is a rookie. There are three picks but all are lower in the draft.

Is that better than what the Nets offered with Brook Lopez and picks? Is it better than the picks and cap relief the Rockets are offering?

Or, is it something you can at least sell to your fan base as good? That may be the case.

144 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. 39plywood - Aug 10, 2012 at 12:55 AM

    Did Jim Buss get thrown into the deal too? Where’s he headed?

  2. kjereld615 - Aug 10, 2012 at 12:58 AM

    I actually really like what Orlando did with his deal. They bring in some young talent in Mo and Nikola and three future draft picks along with Al and Arron. Pretty solid move to me. Now as for Dwight I would have to say he is the loser in this trade. Yeah they’ll have a really good team for two or three years but then what? Both Nash and Kobe are maybe looking to retire in about two to three years and Gasol along with Metta would be on the back end of their career. Whats left is a team worst than the current Orlando Magic team and then Dwight is placed right back into the situation he had in Orlando.

    • passerby23 - Aug 10, 2012 at 2:12 AM

      When Nash and Kobe retire – and don’t forget when Artest comes off the books – they will have major cap room. A lot of guys will be itching to play in LA with Dwight and for big money. That’s the positive.

      The negative is they’ve given away practically all of their draft picks. They’ll have to build a team almost exclusively through free agency, which is not easy to do and they won’t have many assets to trade with.

      At the end of the day, it’s about winning championships and if I’m LA I make this move.

      I don’t see how Orlando gained. Afflalo is a good player, but he needs to be surrounded by other talented players to succeed. They did unload Richardson, which is good. Harrington will play out the year and move on. The future draft picks aren’t anything to write home about. I don’t know, it’s not horrible, but definitely not better than earlier offers.

    • brianjoates - Aug 10, 2012 at 7:16 AM

      Its the la lakers, they will bring in pieces for Howard. Do you see what they have done for Kobe?

  3. manchestermiracle - Aug 10, 2012 at 1:03 AM

    I’m not sure Howard is an upgrade at center, but I do have lots of faith in Kupchak. Jerry West taught him a lot. Now, if the refs allow the Lakers to run pick-and-rolls like they allow other teams, things will get interesting. NBA refs wouldn’t know an illegal pick if it was stuck up their asses. If Kareem Abdul-Jabbar can help make Bynum an offensive force I’d be willing to bet he can do the same with Howard.

    As to the comparison to ’04: The vets (Malone, Payton) that came to the Lakers for a ring were on the downside of their careers. Howard is 26. The better comparison would be to when the Lakers’ Florida farm team (Orlando) sent Shaq to the bigs. That worked out pretty well.

    Nash’s liability on the defensive end just got a whole lot smaller with Howard waiting. If the Lakers can add some depth (and learn to rotate on defense consistently) they have a good chance at giving the Thunder some competition.

    Bynum helped seal his own fate by refusing to grow up. With his obvious love of money over anything else, and his questionable knees, I’m betting he lasts less than five years. Once he has that max deal from Philly his motivation will evaporate (he already has a ring).

  4. freemantowilliams - Aug 10, 2012 at 1:14 AM

    OKC still gonna slap those guys around. Dont know if anybody has noticed but Kobe is declining and Durant is getting better by the second. Still cant believe the sixers would give up on Igoudala. That guy is basically a mini Lebron.

    • sasquash20 - Aug 10, 2012 at 8:20 AM

      clearly you don’t watch Iggy very often

    • b7p19 - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:00 AM

      Mini Lebron is a bit strong for Iggy. I loved watching him for the past several years and will miss him, but the HAD to make this trade. They get potential superstar, which you need to win in the NBA. This will make Drue and Turner much more effective because you know have to double team Bynum. He is going to dominate the Easter Conference centers.

  5. gopokes0714 - Aug 10, 2012 at 1:58 AM

    congrats to LA.

    I’m still taking my Thunder though. Even if the Lakers win the conference. there is something to be said for character and ethics. With players like Artest (which my spell check ironically keeps trying to change to arrest) and Howard the message is clear. We don’t care how shitty of a person you are as long as you can play. pathetic

  6. norseman81 - Aug 10, 2012 at 2:35 AM

    NBA is Rigged! If they allow this trade, they are setting up the Empire league. One that does no good to help out the small market. The rich keep getting richer!

  7. halfbaht - Aug 10, 2012 at 2:56 AM

    Obviously it’s a good deal for the Lakers, but i think in the long run, the 76ers will end up being the winners in this trade. They just got even stronger despite losing iggy. With the moves theyve made this offseason, look for them to be in the Eastern conference semis again this year. The magic haven’t really gotten anything out of it, besides getting rid of J-Rich and his fat contract and the fact that theyll only face dwight twice in the season, unlike if he was at the nets. Throw away season for them, possibly going for a top draft pick?? The nuggets get Andre, who they’ve wanted for a while, but only time will tell what sort of player shows up in Denver. Lakers have to be favorites for the title with Dwight.

  8. Andrés Garcia - Aug 10, 2012 at 5:25 AM

    Mitch Kupchak is a magician. I don’t know how he keeps getting away with it.

  9. evilmajortom - Aug 10, 2012 at 6:58 AM

    Glad I didn’t see the T-Wolves get tricked into taking Gasol some-how, some-way in this deal. Unfortunately, there is still plenty of time for that to happen.

  10. omniusprime - Aug 10, 2012 at 8:47 AM

    As a Laker fan I’m totally miffed that they traded away Bynum for the Orlando Diva. I can only hope that Stern nixes the deal like he did the Paul deal last year. Kupcake needs to be replaced because he’s just gone over the deep end trading for the worst excuse for a human being in the Dwightmare. Thanks Mitch for killing my being a loyal Lakers fan for over 50 years! Looks like Kupcake is really working for Portland instead of the Lakers. At least Gasol is still on the team and they didn’t give away everything on the front line. Still need to get rid of Steve Flake.

  11. watermelon1 - Aug 10, 2012 at 9:05 AM

    Magic…. way to swallow your pride and take much less than what you could have gotten before.

    And not only that, but instead of sending Howard off to a team that still wouldn’t have done much(like the Nets), you send him to the freaking Lakers where he’s surrounded by Nash, Kobe, and Gasol. AWESOME. That’s just begging for Howard to win a title and rub it in your faces.

    Clearly, the wrong people have the money in this world. I could easily run an NBA team better than these billionaires.

  12. bobthis - Aug 10, 2012 at 9:26 AM

    If the Lakers get to the finals Nash will be more responsible than Howard.

  13. unxpexted1 - Aug 10, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    One of the problems the Lakers had last year is they couldn’t utlitize the two bigs they had because they both had the same skillset. Two heavy-footed big man that are best with their back to the basket. This trade gives them two completely different bigs. Dwight howard is better on the move and in pick in roll situation or cutting off the weak side for an alley. Pau is best with his back to the basket post game. this gives the lakers to use their bigs in two completely different ways and get Pau gasol away from that three point line and back to his natural position close ot the basket. Instand improvement.

  14. paulhargis53 - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:10 AM

    the road to the finals still goes through okc. The crash of the Lakers is just going to be from 35000 feet instead of 25000 feet. I just love how lakersucker and his inane minions have them penciled into the finals already.

    The huge difference between the Celtics and Heats big threes is that they put egos and more $ aside.
    The Lakers areca different story. Jones huge ego means he needs his 25-30 shots a game. Howard wants his max contract. He doesn’t want to be the 3rd option. Nash can’t play 40mpg. They have. 1 dimensional bench players…..yeah, its going to be a magnificent crash and I can’t wait.

    • loungefly74 - Aug 12, 2012 at 11:02 PM

      wow…that’s it? i was expecting better stuff from you paulhargis53…

      well…i’m just going to continue to say…we will see what happens. yeah, you’re right, OKC and the Heat are top dogs right now, they were there last and until someone unsets them, they are the ones to beat.

      …egos can be an issue. yeah, it can go either way. i’m hoping dwight and steve fall in line…by the way, 2 players you have mentioned several times that would never play for the Lakers…now that they have joined…do they suck now? i’m sure you think so…

      yep…i agree…its Championship or bust. we will see.

  15. paulhargis53 - Aug 10, 2012 at 12:30 PM

    *Kobe, not Jones……sheesh.

  16. freetospeakjamaica - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:46 AM

    Once again I am left wondering if the rest of the NBA has an unwavering desire to see the L.A Lakers win Championships. The Pau trade was very questionable for me and now they have in essence rebuilt their turn of the century squad;

    Solid Veteran Point Guard, Superstar 2 Guard, Solid and Experienced 4 and a dominant Big from Orlando!

    Now if they can just get their Swingmen to not Choke or Elbow anyone then they should be at least in the Conference finals. The road there may be tricky though with the Original L.A. Team improving steadily, Denver getting some more size and athleticism, Seattle… Sorry, Oklahoma City getting more mature and in sync and them there sly old Regulators from down by the border getting ready for a last hurrah, the West looks very interesting this 2012-2013 Season.

    As for out East; the world was spared the Onslaught of the Charging Bulls last playoffs, but lets see if they (D Rose) can stay healthy this time around. The 6ers are looking like they can make a little noise this season and may even create some havoc for contenders. Miami had better go shopping for at least one more Solid Role Man off to completely solidify the links.

    As for Orlando, they are clearly in rebuilding mode and only shopped for some tradeable pieces which could bring them some better picks and maybe even a rising star or superstar to build around.

    Peace from the land of Sun.

    P.S Hope my boy does his thing over there in Indie!

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