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Dwight Howard cut ties with cousin/manager. Is it a sign of maturity?

Mar 19, 2013, 6:47 PM EST

Los Angeles Lakers v Denver Nuggets Getty Images

When Dwight Howard was drafted and moved to Orlando, his parents had his first cousin Kevin Samples go with him in a big brother role. That eventually developed into Samples being Howard’s manager. He’s a guy that was in the middle of the Dwightmare in Orlando.

Dwight Howard has now severed that business relationship, the Lakers center told Kevin Ding of the Orange County Register.

It’s a big move for Howard, it’s no small thing to fire your cousin. Or your nine-year manager. It’s a sign Howard wants to change how business is done around him, to change perceptions about him.

We’ve seen some of that change on the court — Howard isn’t demanding post touches, he’s playing pick-and-roll ball with Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash. Howard’s is taking over on the defensive end. He is finding a comfort level on the court and how to be himself with the Lakers. Ding laid it out well.

That’s how Howard could be so unflappable as he marched through the fire of his Orlando homecoming one week ago. Bryant advised Howard to be a killer, but that’s Bryant. What Howard is learning more from Bryant is how not to surrender to the fear of failure.

When Kobe isn’t being afraid to fail, he is a killer. But when Dwight isn’t being afraid to fail, he is a joy.

So Howard played his game, had his fun and got the victory in Orlando, telling hecklers “Thank you” or “Let it go” or “I’m going to get mine” depending on how he felt – not giving anyone’s hateful words or outside opinions the power to control him.

Howard is an unrestricted free agent this summer, but nobody thinks he will be anything but a Laker next year. It was never really likely, more the speculation of teams hoping it to be so. This change in management is more a sign of Howard taking control of his career. Of getting what he wants. And that is going to be staying with the Lakers and trying to win as part of that legacy.

  1. dirtydavis - Mar 19, 2013 at 6:57 PM

    Say Whhhhuuuuuaaaat!?

  2. urodaddy07 - Mar 19, 2013 at 7:26 PM

    Too many of these pieces are more speculation than fact. We don’t know why, we only know it did.

  3. thetooloftools - Mar 19, 2013 at 7:29 PM

    You can’t teach a passion for the game and Clownboy has none. Howard is a duck’s name.

  4. money2long - Mar 19, 2013 at 7:32 PM

    superman is coming back…

  5. yousuxxors - Mar 19, 2013 at 8:09 PM

    family and business dont mix

  6. dannymac17 - Mar 19, 2013 at 8:22 PM

    thats like me hiring my meth head cousin to do my taxes

    this was a bad idea from the start

    • dko83 - Mar 19, 2013 at 8:42 PM

      lmao!

    • fatcamper - Mar 20, 2013 at 10:02 AM

      You’re firing me? I stayed up for six days straight working on your return. I also regrouted your kitchen tile and hand picked the lint from all the shirts in your closet. I don’t understand the big deal about drinking that case of Mountain Dew, and I swear I don’t know what happened to your Drain-O. Some people…

  7. cosanostra71 - Mar 19, 2013 at 8:44 PM

    Good for Dwight. I think playing with Kobe has helped him. You can see his personality change a bit he is more like Kobe which is good

  8. badintent - Mar 19, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    Diwght and Bryum will have two things in common at season end. No rings and new teams.

    • money2long - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:17 PM

      and according to you, two new ways to spell their name. geez.

  9. lakerluver - Mar 19, 2013 at 8:55 PM

    Elite players don’t leave the LAKERS…they want to join the LAKERS.
    #theLAKERSzealot

  10. manchestermiracle - Mar 20, 2013 at 12:17 AM

    Having someone you trust to guide you when you’re young is a good thing, whether it’s a close friend or relative, but at some point you have to start making your own decisions and stop deferring to others. We all get guidance throughout our lives, some good and some not so good. Knowing the difference is key.

    A sign of maturity is understanding when someone has served their purpose and can no longer take you where you want to go. I know it pisses a lot of people off (particularly on this site) but Howard is growing up, slowly but surely, and this is another sign that he’s taking control of the path he’s chosen.

    I’ve been a partner in a family business, I know many people who run family businesses, and I’m currently employed in a family business (though I’m not a member of the family). The trick is to simply keep business separate from family. Some can do it, some can’t. Despite dealing with family members in a business environment, virtually every experience has been positive and lucrative.

    Obviously Howard’s cousin isn’t as experienced as a career agent and doesn’t have those kinds of connections. Howard realized it was time to move on. Good for him and here’s hoping he continues to grow and gets what he’s working for.

  11. gasan2013pananaw - Mar 20, 2013 at 1:17 AM

    The firing of Mr. Samples is just a matter of time. I agree it’s a sign of maturity for Dwight howard. What ever happened to them in Orlando was certainly handled very poorly with plenty of wrong decisions. L.A. is such a huge market bigger than Orlando. The financial athmosphere is delicate, too vast and I’m afraid Mr. Samples is not capable of handling. If Dwight Howard decides to leave, and there should be another Dwightmare II,Dwight just need to be sure that he will leave the situation,critical decisions in capable hands. Or if he decides to stay, he also want to make sure that he will be in capable hands to make future plans,decisions. L.A. is a very complex market financially, and this could be a sign that this is his preparation for his next Chapter of his baskeball life. Here in L.A.

  12. eugenesaxe - Mar 20, 2013 at 4:43 PM

    Took him this long to figure out maybe he was getting bad guidance? Better late than never, but I’ll see a “mature” howard when I see it.

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