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Dwight Howard plans to “clear my head” before deciding future

May 1, 2013, 8:00 AM EDT

Dwight Howard AP

Dwight Howard is a free agent and he has waited for this moment. He played out his contract, he has earned the right to choose where he wants to work.

He’s not going to rush this.

While the conventional wisdom is he will re-sign with the Lakers, he is going to look around. Eventually. But he said in his exit interview Tuesday he wouldn’t talk about it other than to say he’s not going to rush the process.

“I’m going to take my time, get away from the game, my phones and everything and just clear my head,” Howard said. “I’ll do what’s going to be best for myself, what’s going to make me happy. I can’t control who likes me, who dislikes me, but I have the right to be happy.”

Don’t we all?

Howard can say that because he’s not officially a free agent until July 1. At that point look for him to talk to Houston, Dallas and maybe Cleveland or other squads as well as the Lakers.

Both Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash said they want Howard to return. Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak tried to send a message to the notoriously indecisive Howard — we want you here, but if you want us to build a good team around you then don’t drag this process out.

“I think he has complete faith in the organization. I think he does like living here. I think it’s all good, which leads me to why I’m optimistic,” Kupchak said…

“I think he understands that the sooner he makes a decision, the better it is for everybody. I don’t know if that means a week, a month or seven weeks.”

If there was one other thing to take away from Kupchack’s press conference, it’s that Mike D’Antoni will be back as coach next season. You’d like to think that would get Lakers fans to drop the Phil Jackson fantasy — he’s not coming — but that dream dies hard.

  1. kb2408 - May 1, 2013 at 3:45 PM

    That’s ludicrous. For what he brings to a team he’s worth the max. He is the best defender and rebounder in the league when healthy and he gets 20 pts a game on dunks and put backs. Is he a number one option? No, but he can help Lakers win titles.

    • unxpexted1 - May 1, 2013 at 3:50 PM

      so hold up, you’re saying you’re willing ot pay the MAX for a dude thats not a first option? C’mon now.

    • aboogy123456 - May 1, 2013 at 4:14 PM

      I think a benefit to playing with Howard is that he doesn’t HAVE to be the number one option on offense to dominate a game. Imagine if he played with Harden for example. Harden would clearly be the guy with the ball in his hands and taking the final shot, but Howard would be the guy dominating in the trenches and having the most impact on the game.

      • unxpexted1 - May 1, 2013 at 4:40 PM

        I agree, but that doesnt mean I have to overpay for it. Especially since he hasn’t shown much heart since being a Lakers. Real talk, I would love to just offer him the same max he would get elsewhere (90 somethin million i believe), and make him CHOOSE. If he wants to be a Laker then he’ll be a Laker, and he will come ready to play. You give him the max you are putting WAY to much stock into this guy who might as well be an eggo as much as he waffles. If he doesnt WANT to be with us, I’ll try our chances in 2014, but i dont like the idea of throwing money at him to make him stay at this point.

      • aboogy123456 - May 1, 2013 at 4:56 PM

        that’s a good point, I think he would still take the same amount of money to play for the lakers than another team. He loves it in LA and he wants to be a superstar in a big market, plus acting opportunities, bigger marketing deals, etc.. He wants to win but it’s short sighted to think he will sign with the rockets or whoever just because they are better than LA this year. most important for him is that he wants to have fun and I think LA is the place.

        I bet you he would take the 90 million like you say, but the lakers have so much money that I think they just max him out to make sure he’s happy. I didn’t think about that though so we’ll see what they do.

    • t3llm3momo - May 9, 2013 at 6:06 PM

      If he’s the best how come they didn’t get out of the first round? If he didn’t get a title this year! What is going to be the difference next year-NADA!!!!

  2. listerineman - May 1, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    i never saw a player in the nba before as bad for the league image has he is.

  3. bucs24 - May 1, 2013 at 6:19 PM

    He’s not resigning

  4. andyreidisfat - May 1, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    I’m sorry lakers fans, it’s time for some truth. D Howard is a tall guy who can jump but can’t play basketball. Sorry.

    The sixers and lakers both got worked by Orlando in that trade.

    I can’t believe that for all the talk last summer the best center right now is brooks Lopez.

    Which brings me to my final point. Taking Shaq and Hakeem out (howArd is not close to that level at all) how many teams who won had had great centers ??? That’s right, none.

    The lakers would be smart to cut their losses, go into rebuilding mode and just wait to sign Lebron when he is a free agent.

    Without Kobe they aren’t even a playoff team heck they may be one of the worst teams in the west.

  5. t3llm3momo - May 9, 2013 at 6:18 PM

    Lately Hollywood has been making a lot of bad movies, and expects everyone to overpay for trash.
    Here again Lakes are putting more trash on the hardwood and expects it too shine like a diamond.
    The coach is garbage, the GM is retarded, and the team is trash!!! But its spray painted GOLD, AND EVERYONE WANTS A PIECE OF THE GOLDEN NUGGET..

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